Michael Largey Professor of Musicology


  • Musicology / Ethnomusicology

313 Music Practice Building
East Lansing, MI 48824

(517) 353-9013


Michael Largey is professor of musicology at the Michigan State University College of Music.

Largey is an ethnomusicologist and folklorist who writes about the music and culture of Haiti, specifically Haitian classical and religious music. He teaches courses in Caribbean music, South Asian music, East Asian music, ethnographic fieldwork, world music, and historical musicology. He taught previously at Columbia University in New York. He is a core faculty member in the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies and the Asian Studies Center at Michigan State University.

Largey is author of Vodou Nation: Haitian Art Music and Cultural Nationalism (University of Chicago Press, 2006), which was awarded the 2007 Alan Merriam Prize from the Society for Ethnomusicology for the most distinguished book in the field of ethnomusicology. Largey is also a co-author with Peter Manuel of the third edition of Caribbean Currents: Caribbean Music from Rumba to Reggae (Temple University Press, 2016). The first edition of Caribbean Currents (co-authored by Peter Manuel and Kenneth Bilby) won the 1996 Gordon K. Lewis Memorial Award for Caribbean Scholarship from the Caribbean Studies Association and was a 1996 Choice Outstanding Academic Book.  His most recent book is Haitians in Michigan (Michigan State University Press, 2010). He has also conducted extensive research on the Haitian Lenten processional music known as Rara. 

Largey has received research funding from the U.S. Department of Education (Fulbright-Hays fellowship), the Library of Congress (Gerald E. and Corinne L. Parsons Fund for Ethnography), the Black Metropolis Research Consortium (African American Studies fellowship), and the Thomas J. Watson Foundation (Thomas J. Watson fellowship). 

Largey received the Fintz Award for Teaching Excellence in the Arts and Humanities in 2012, the Dortha J. and John D. Withrow Award for Excellence in Teaching from the College of Music in 2010, and the MSU Teacher-Scholar Award for outstanding teaching and research in 1998. He served as program chair for the annual meeting of the Society for Ethnomusicology in 2001 and was president of the Midwest Chapter of the Society for Ethnomusicology in 1999. Largey gave the Laura Boulton Distinguished Lecture in Ethnomusicology at the Field Museum in Chicago in 1997 and was a Lilly Teaching Fellow in 1996-97. He is on the editorial advisory boards of both the Black Music Research Journal and CR: The New Centennial Review.

Largey received an AB in history and music at Bowdoin College (cum laude, magna cum laude in music), and MA and PhD degrees in folklore and ethnomusicology from Indiana University.

Vodou Nation
Haitians in Michigan
Caribbean Currents
Creolizing Contradance in the Caribbean
The Emergence of Folklore in Everyday Life