Singing “I Will Survive”: Performance as Evolving Relationship

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music, performance, recorded music, personae, Gloria Gaynor

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The 1978 disco hit “I Will Survive,” made popular by Gloria Gaynor, has personal significance for me as a listener and as a performer. In this essay, I trace my evolving relationship with this song from my childhood as I sang and listened to the song with my mother to my later performances of the song as a musician in different bands. In telling my story, I look to my various relationships with this song to argue for an analysis of music that complicates and considers the ways in which the listener, performer, and performance work together to shape the ways in which we come to interpret meanings and identities in the cultural performance of music.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Cultural Studies ↔ Critical Methodologies, v. 10, issue 4, p. 326-333.