Blogging at the intersection of urban studies and popular music

Posts tagged "London"
looking for the new Brooklyn: creative migrations & musical landscapes in upstate New York

looking for the new Brooklyn: creative migrations & musical landscapes in upstate New York

For the Musical Urbanism seminar, Hua Hsu and I were pleased to invite Piotr Orlov to speak about his research on musical legacies and migrations in upstate New York. Here’s the video of our conversation (apologies for the way his mic drops in and out between 7:30-27:00). “Leonard Nevarez and Hua Hsu of Vassar College’s...
listening to home, encountering the other: book review of "Migrating Music"

listening to home, encountering the other: book review of “Migrating Music”

The settlement of foreign-born ethnic migrants has to be the oldest source of urban vitality. It’s also a wellspring of musical innovation. Might the latter connection offer insights into the modern city? That’s always my hope when I read books like Migrating Music (Routledge, 2012). Edited by Jayson Toynbee and Byron Dueck, this volume addresses the cultural...
weird scenes from the 5 and the TCH: metropolitan structure and rock in Canada

weird scenes from the 5 and the TCH: metropolitan structure and rock in Canada

It was November 1977, and it was the first time any of us had traversed our home and native land. We soon found out what a big-ass country Canada is. The ground in Saskatchewan was covered with snow, and it was so fucking flat that you could see a grain elevator miles away. It looked...
network southeast not SXSW: guest blog by Andrew Stevens

network southeast not SXSW: guest blog by Andrew Stevens

[Very pleased to feature Musical Urbanism’s first guest blogger, Andrew Stevens, a writer and researcher living in London. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Stevens is a Member of the Regional Studies Association and Urban Economics Association. -LN] I read about a band in South East 23, I thought it was me, I...
whey we don't hear the city in Siouxsie and the Banshees

whey we don’t hear the city in Siouxsie and the Banshees

  Currently I’m revising and expanding an essay I posted here a year ago, about how Joy Division came to sound like Manchester, to present at the 2012 EMP Pop Conference next month. The artistic connection between Joy Division and their city of origin is clear and powerful for many listeners, but my argument is that the connection isn’t...
remembering the serious triviality of pop music

remembering the serious triviality of pop music

Something left unelaborated in my review of Echotone (from the last two posts: here and here) is a larger uneasiness with the instrumentalization of independent or underground music — the reduction of pop music culture from an end in itself to a means for other ends.  Although this isn’t a new critique of post-punk music (i.e., music groups inspired...
uncovering the underground: Ladbroke Grove

uncovering the underground: Ladbroke Grove

As someone who’s been seeking out underground rock music for over 25 years, punk rock really fucked me up. Specifically, the punk rock dogma I internalized by reading the English music weekly New Musical Express religiously between 1983-85. Punk rock in England was largely over in these years, unless you were talking about groups like...
gathering no moss with Keith Richards

gathering no moss with Keith Richards

The beginning of the new semester has kept me from posting recently. Well, that and the excellent distraction provided by Keith Richards’ autobiography, Life. So much fun to read, and so much food for thought for someone who’s admittedly not the world’s biggest Stones fan. One theme that emerges loud and clear is his cosmopolitanism. Raised...
haunting the urban: dubstep

haunting the urban: dubstep

First post draws on Bassweight, a new documentary about the dubstep scene coming out of South London. The film begins with a DJ leading the camera on a daytime tour of Croydon’s sidewalks, pointing out a nightclub here or there atop anonymous commercial buildings before ending up at (what else?) a record store. At some point...

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