The Japanese Association for the Study of Popular Music

2022年度 第2回 オンライン例会








JASPM Special Session “Tutti Frutti: Little Richard, Sex, Gender, and Transgression in America and Europe”


2022.6.26 (Sun) 16:00-18:00 [JST] / 09:00-11:00 [CEST] on Zoom
*pre-registration required for non-JASPM members


Guest Speaker: Dr. Jacob Bloomfield (University of Konstanz)
Discussants: Yuka Kanno (Doshisha University), Toshiyuki Ohwada (Keio University)
Moderator: Amane Kasai (Waseda University)
Co-host: Waseda Institute for Advanced Study


Tutti Frutti: Little Richard, Sex, Gender, and Transgression in America and Europe, probes how gender nonconforming, African-American recording artist Little Richard became one of the most popular musicians in the United States and Europe during the 1950s and pre-‘sexual revolution’ 1960s; a period marked by the pervasive repression of sexual and gender expression, as well as racial bigotry. Tutti Frutti argues that observers found Richard appealing because of his highly effeminate, flamboyant persona, not despite it. The project draws upon a wide range of primary sources to analyse the historical reception to Richard’s music and image, including the mainstream American and European press, the Black press, entertainment industry trade publications, the queer press, and fan magazines. Analysing reception by third-party observers sets this project apart from the small amount of pre-existing scholarship on Richard which has relied overwhelmingly on music and personal recollections by the singer himself as primary source data. In arguing that gender variance has persisted as an essential and cherished part of modern popular culture in the West, despite the controversy the practice sometimes generated, Tutti Frutti builds upon themes addressed in Jacob Bloomfield’s first monograph, Drag: A British History (University of California Press, under contract, 2023), which analyses popular renderings of British drag performance in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.


Dr. Jacob Bloomfield is a Zukunftskolleg Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Konstanz and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Kent. His research is situated primarily in the fields of Cultural History, the History of Sexuality, and Gender History. Jacob is currently working on a first monograph with University of California Press on the history of drag performance in modern Britain, as well as a separate research project on the career and legacy of musician Little Richard.