Uncovering the Collective Labor Behind the Singer/Songwriter: A Collaboratively Produced Album

Class Year


Access Type

Archival Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department or Program

Media Studies Program

First Advisor

Thomas Porcello

Second Advisor

Justin Patch


This project is an album consisting of nine original songs that I arranged, performed, and recorded at Vassar College. The accompanying thesis destabilizes the media construct of the independent singer/songwriter by interrogating the medium-specific space between the composition and the recording of the album. I uncover the invisible labor behind the creation and recording of the music of a singer/songwriter, a term that implies every song is written, produced, and performed by a single artist. I examine how the musicians involved in the project influenced and shaped each stage of production, and analyze the significance of this collective creativity. Through a mainly subjective lens, I draw observations from my identification as a singer/songwriter and explore the intellectual awareness I had in my role and experience in the collaborative processes of songwriting, performance, and recording with others, working within the singer/songwriter genre.

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