Dancing in the Fields: Imagined Landscapes and Virtual Locality in Indigenous Andean Music Videos

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The move from analogue audio cassette to digital VCD (Video Compact Disc) in around 2003, as a primary format for recorded music, opened up a new era for music production and consumption in the Bolivian Andes. This cheap digital technology both created new regional markets among low-income indigenous people, quickly making it almost unthinkable for regional artists to produce a commercial music recording without video images. This paper explores the character of these images, reflecting in particular on the tendency to depict musicians and dancers performing in rural landscapes. It charts a long association between Andean music and landscape, both in the global imagination and in local practices, relating this to the idea of an Andean arcadia; a concept rooted in European classical imaginaries. It also goes behind the scenes and explores the class-related practices, values and priorities of music video producers, and how these play out in different genres.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-29
Number of pages29
JournalTRANS-Revista Transcultural de Música/Transcultural Music Review
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016


  • Lansdcape
  • indigeneity
  • music video
  • Bolivia
  • Andes
  • VCD

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