Juan David Rubio Restrepo

Job title: 
Assistant Professor
Department of Music

Juan David Rubio Restrepo is an artist/scholar focusing on Latin American popular musics and global experimental practices. He is Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology at the University of California, Berkeley. His research explores the intersection between sound technologies, alterity, and power with a thematic scope that ranges from Pan-American cumbia practices to robotic/AI music-making. His research situated in Latin America considers how time- and site-specific racial formations are articulated and disturbed through music and sound. His current book project focuses on Ecuadorian singer Julio Jaramillo’s (1935-1978) mediatized figure and phonographic vocality. Using multi-sited ethnographic and archival work, the book queries Jaramillo’s transnational status of “popular singer” (“cantante popular”) vis-à-vis hegemonic political and racial ideologies of the Spanish-speaking Americas of the second half of the twentieth century.

Originally a drummer, Juan David has performed for over two decades, mostly on drum kit. His instrumental practice spans jazz, improvisation, punk, contemporary music, and Afro-Latin musics, among others. As composer, he has produced works for multi- and inter-media settings, electroacoustic pieces, and non-traditionally notated compositions. He has also performed, composed, and produced telematic performances and workshops with collaborators in Latin America, Europe, and Asia. Juan David holds a Bachelor of Music with an emphasis on Jazz Studies and Drum Kit Performance from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (Bogotá, Colombia), a Master of Fine Arts in Music from the Integrated Composition Improvisation and Technology (ICIT) program at the University of California, Irvine, and a Ph.D. in Music with a focus on Integrative Studies from the University of California, San Diego.

Research interests: 

Latin American popular musics and global experimental practices; sound, race, and theories of the human; mestizaje and musical nationalisms; sound technologies; music circulation and media capitalism; drumming, improvisation, and composition