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The ‘world’ before globalisation: Moroccan elements in The Incredible String Band's music

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 January 2011

Oliver Lovesey
University of British Columbia, Okanagan Campus, Kelowna, BC, Canada. E-mail:


Before the advent of ‘world’ music in the culture of globalisation, The Incredible String Band in the 1960s added elements of Moroccan and other international music into their work. In the context of an exploration of the band's journey to the east, this article argues that the ISB's ‘exotic’ sounds became the aural signifier of the psychedelic, and that the ISB's aesthetic of appropriation veered from fetishisation, and also homage and parody, to ritualised adaptation. The ISB's pre-‘world’ use of international music was self-consciously naive, but it may have enabled later modes of cultural appropriation.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2011

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