What ares the functions of singing in social life, and how how have these changed during recent generations?
Questions like this become poignant when one watches Terence Davies' autobiographic film Distant Voices, Still Lives, which is now available as video on demand through the Guardian and distrify.
Terence Davies' presentation of Liverpool in the 1940's and 50's shows people singing for all kinds of occasions: in pubs; at home; during funerals; to get through desperate situations - or simply to pass the time of day. In the days of radio, people were used to remembering songs and using them actively. How many of us can say the same today?