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Fernando Rios

Assistant Professor, Ethnomusicology
Musicology & Ethnomusicology Division
B.A., MacMurray College (Psychology); M.M., Southern Illinois University-Carbondale (Music History and Classical Guitar Pedagogy); Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (Ethnomusicology).

Fernando Rios is Assistant Professor in Ethnomusicology at the University of Maryland. He specializes in Latin American folkloric and popular music, with a concentration on the traditions of the Southern Andes. Dr. Rios’s dissertation won the Nicholas Temperley Award for Excellence in a Dissertation in Musicology, a biennial prize for ethnomusicologists and historical musicologists. For this project, he interviewed over 250 individuals during 23 months of fieldwork in Bolivia, Argentina and France, and conducted extensive archival research at La Paz’s Congressional Library. Currently, he is completing a book manuscript (under contract with Oxford University Press), which elucidates how urban La Paz society, from the 1930s to the 1970s, came to conceptualize folkloric musical representations of Andean rural indigenous community (ayllu) traditions as highly emblematic forms of Bolivian national culture, demonstrating that this complex process was simultaneously entangled with local nation-building projects and international artistic currents (e.g., popular music fashions, nativist movements) throughout this entire period but whose successful articulation occurred for the first time within the socio-political conjuncture of the mid-to-late 1960s. The book devotes particular attention to the initial popularization in Bolivia of the Andean conjunto, the mixed-instrument ensemble format (kena-charango-guitar-bombo was the standard line-up in this era) and overtly nativist performance style that from the 1970s to the present has been the most recognized Andean musical tradition worldwide.

Theoretical and topical interests Nationalism, cosmopolitanism/globalization, folklorization, appropriation, localization, exoticism.

Professional Affiliations Society for Ethnomusicology (SEM), Latin American and Caribbean Music Section, Indigenous Music Special Interest Group, Mid-Atlantic Chapter (MACSEM), Latin American Studies Association (LASA); Affiliate faculty of UMD’s Latin American Studies Center (LASC).

Selected Publications “They’re Stealing Our Music: The Argentinísima Controversy, National Culture Boundaries and the Rise of a Bolivian Nationalist Discourse.” Latin American Music Review 35 (2): 197-227, Fall/Winter 2014.

“The Andean Conjunto, Bolivian Sikureada and the Folkloric Musical Representation Continuum.” Ethnomusicology Forum 21(1): 5-29, April 2012.

“Bolero Trios, Mestizo Panpipe Ensembles and Bolivia’s 1952 Revolution: Urban La Paz Musicians and the Nationalist Revolutionary Movement.” Ethnomusicology 54(2): 281-317, Spring/Summer 2010.

“La Flûte Indienne: The Early History of Andean Folkloric-Popular Music in France and Its Impact on Nueva Canción.” Latin American Music Review 29(2): 145-189, Fall/Winter 2008.

Andean Music, the Left, and Pan-Latin Americanism: The Early History.” Diagonal: Journal of the Center for Iberian and Latin American Music 2: 1-13, 2006.

Courses Taught: MUSC 210 The Impact of Music on Life; MUSC 438D Area Studies in Ethnomusicology: Music of Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru; MUSC 438M Area Studies in Ethnomusicology: Mexican and Mexican-American Music; MUSC 632 The Anthropology of Music; MUSC 633 Field Methods in Ethnomusicology; MUSC 679 Seminar in Ethnomusicology: Music and Nation-Building; MUSC 679G Seminar in Ethnomusicology: Music and Globalization.

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