Blogging at the intersection of urban studies and popular music

Posts tagged "music industry"
how to teach Musical Urbanism in three lectures

how to teach Musical Urbanism in three lectures

Thought I would share this for teachers and academics: a guest lecture section that I just gave in an undergraduate Introduction to Urban Studies course taught by Lisa Brawley at Vassar College. Readers are welcome to incorporate or adapt this material into their own teachings.   Day 1: Theorizing the post-industrial city Readings: Richard Lloyd...
David Mancuso at Dub Spot Records

David Mancuso at Dub Spot Records

In this year of awful news, I wonder if we’re currently experiencing what evangelical Christians call the rapture. Only now the evangelicals remain on earth, while great people whose contributions made the world a better place are passing away almost daily. Just reviewing the music world memoriam since January: David Bowie, Lemmy, Glenn Frey, Blowfly...
a Toronto/Martha & the Muffins annotated bibliography

a Toronto/Martha & the Muffins annotated bibliography

For the Martha and the Muffins book project, the first task I’ve set for myself is to dive into the literature. Toronto is fairly terra incognito for me; to contextualize the geographic sensibilities embodied in the band’s music and career, an appreciation of its urban history and geography is in order. Also, Canadianness and ‘Canada’...
the greatest reinventions in pop-music careers, #50-41

the greatest reinventions in pop-music careers, #50-41

Today I take up a question of pop-culture history: which performers made the most unexpected left turns with their careers?  I farmed this question out awhile back to readers of this blog, and today I start filing the results based on my own subjective assessment.  Debate and criticisms are welcome in the comment section (or,...
EDM as tourism: the rebranding of UK rave

EDM as tourism: the rebranding of UK rave

Last month, I answered some questions for a UK media/marketing firm researching how UK rave circa 1989 evolved into the US youth phenomenon of electronic dance music (EDM) — a question I’ve asked before on this blog.  The piece is lengthy and lies behind a paywall, but author Emmajo Read did a great job. By...
album radio spots, 1967-82

album radio spots, 1967-82

Continuing with my last post on the decline of urban music retail, here’s a truly extinct medium: the album radio spot. These advertisements flourished in an era when record companies pursued mass markets of radio listeners who bought their music in record stores. How many of those conditions exist anymore, at least in this combination?...
some thoughts on the decline of urban music retail

some thoughts on the decline of urban music retail

I had a brief but interesting Twitter conversation yesterday triggered by Maura Johnston’s link to a New York Times article about how J&R Music World, a venerable downtown NYC retailer of music, hardware and technology, is abandoning its CD sales. already happened to fans of all music across US… MT @nytimes NY classical fans running...
Restless Records, 1989: from an independent label intern's view

Restless Records, 1989: from an independent label intern’s view

The inspiration for my latest post: a request. How cool to find out @enigmarecords, where I did my first internship, is on @twitter. Tweet more, Enigma! What are the Effigies up to? — Mara Schwartz (@mara_schwartz) December 8, 2013 @MusicalUrbanism @EnigmaRecords I would like to read this. — Mara Schwartz (@mara_schwartz) December 9, 2013 In...
how the sound of New York came from four Brooklyn high schools

how the sound of New York came from four Brooklyn high schools

One of the great eras in New York City music comes not from a ‘scene’ of musicians and audiences as we normally think of this term, but from the very mercenary activities associated with the songwriters, publishers, and promoters associated with the city’s Tin Pan Alley.  In Always Magic in the Air: The Bomp and...
cherchez la femme: Tommy Mottola and Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band

cherchez la femme: Tommy Mottola and Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band

I’m fairly immune to the musical charms of the many recording artists whose careers were launched into stratosphere by Tommy Mottola, “one of the most powerful, visionary, and successful executives in the history of the music industry.”  Mariah Carey, Daryl Hall & John Oates, Celine Dion, Gloria Estefan, New Kids on the Block, Shakira, Jennifer...
musical suburbanism, pt. 1: Kidz Bop and the commodification of kids' listening

musical suburbanism, pt. 1: Kidz Bop and the commodification of kids’ listening

Last summer I took a family roadtrip and was driven slightly insane by the heavy rotation of Kidz Bop CDs on the car stereo.  In a rare moment of solitude carved out of a frenzied week, I sent out these missives via Twitter:   1. if one promise of musical urbanism is Simmel’s vision of...
the dull ubiquity of placeless music festivals

the dull ubiquity of placeless music festivals

Some questions for investigations here, presented in the form of a rant. As part of my research in musical urbanism, I consume a fair amount of music coverage in print and online. Jesus Christ, all I seem to find these days is “writing” about generic touring festivals headlined by Coldplay/Metallica/Fiona Apple/Beach House/you name it. News about new music...

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