ABSTRACT

Although little is known about the actual impact of the international recorded music industry on local music cultures in developing countries, there is a great deal of speculation concerning its effects. Some scholars assume that the major companies direct and domesticate local cultural production, leading to hegemony and homogenization. Other scholars overestimate the possibilities of “independent” and “original” cultural creation, giving too much weight to the potential of popular culture for resistance and to the capacity of the public to use cultural commodities for their own purposes. Both approaches have their strengths and their limitations.1 The issue is complicated by the fact that some cultural movements appear to contradict both theses. Though culture industries have enormous resources for achieving their objectives, artists can take advantage of spaces left by these industries to renew and reinvigorate local cultures.2 One such example is that of the mangue beat movement from Recife, capital of Pernambuco State, in the northeast region of Brazil.