Interesting read, but not really enlightening for anyone who plays rebetiko. Very scholarly and dry writer. I prefer to just listen to the great music of the time.
You have the gift of being able to retain stuff just because you hear it. Be grateful; not all of us have it that easy. Of course, people who regularly play in a given genre know what it should sound like and how to go about it, but for others who come from different musical traditions, someone else's good synopsis can be very helpful.
Agreed, dissertations as a genre tend to be rather "scholarly and dry." That is imposed by the requirements that the writer is trying to fulfill in order to receive his degree. And some of them are useless, an interesting idea and all the required stuff, but no real content. The ones that are most useful reflect years acquiring knowledge through experience, coupled by a few years of the work of creating a coherent synopsis of that experience for the benefit of others. One has to already know something about the field to benefit from it, but good dissertations can serve to greatly shorten someone's learning curve. This one, for example, has shown me that a couple of oddities that I have picked up on in my music are quite useful in yours, with some additional variations, and it has also noted another way of thinking that I will need to spend some time following up on.
So, again I want to thank Jack for digging this out and making it available here.