Blogging at the intersection of urban studies and popular music

Posts tagged "communion"
the curious case of Mariya Takeuchi’s Plastic Love: guest blog by Thomas Calkins

the curious case of Mariya Takeuchi’s Plastic Love: guest blog by Thomas Calkins

[I’ve wanted Thomas Calkins to write something for this blog since well before I served as external adviser to his University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee sociology dissertation on the life and death of urban record stores. While that project currently evolves into academic journals publications, he found the time to share some thoughts on a quite recent...
a place where people like us go: how the New York Times reports the Hudson Valley

a place where people like us go: how the New York Times reports the Hudson Valley

I’ve noticed that folks in the Hudson Valley can’t avoid taking the bait when the New York Times puts out a new article about the region. We griped loud and long about that one from 2011, “Williamsburg on the Hudson,” that I even wrote about. And just last month, an especially egregious bit of lifestyle...
concert stories: an #aprilconcertchallenge collection

concert stories: an #aprilconcertchallenge collection

Last week, a Facebook meme made the rounds asking users to list “10 Concerts I’ve Been To, One is a Lie.” While I’m game for almost any music list meme, I didn’t participate because I got sucked into into a smaller one on Instagram created by an old punk rocker @bookishlife: the #aprilconcertchallenge. I think...
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...
new publications

new publications

I’ve had a couple of articles published in the past month. First, and most relevant to my musical urbanism project, an article about the proto-EU visions traced in the career of Simple Minds, “Sound in 70 Cities: The European Urbanism of Simple Minds,” has been published in a new edited volume: Unsichtbare Landschaften/Invisible Landscapes: Popular...
let the children use it: the School of Rock presents David Bowie

let the children use it: the School of Rock presents David Bowie

Last weekend I saw my nephew play drums in a David Bowie tribute concert at the School of Rock in Fort Washington (a suburb of Philadelphia).  Unsurprisingly, I had a blast. I mean, how could any Bowie fan resist the prospect of watching a rotating ensemble of middle- and high school-aged kids performing a 2+...
a history of rave: from the UK to Ultra Miami

a history of rave: from the UK to Ultra Miami

Almost six months since the Ultra Music Festival held its ninth annual event in Miami, an official “aftermovie” was just released two days ago.  It’s so bonkers and over the top in how it depicts the state of the art in rave culture, it calls for a juxtaposition with an earlier moment in rave culture,...
sound in 70 cities: the European urbanism of Simple Minds

sound in 70 cities: the European urbanism of Simple Minds

Dream, dream, dream It’s the eighties’ youthful theme Loving the city A theme for great cities And loved ones And love – “Wonderful In Young Life” (1981)   Americans know them mostly as “that Breakfast Club band” from the 80s, but Scotland’s Simple Minds have carried on in one form or another long enough to...
the view from suburbia: Dead Kennedys, Washington DC, 6-5-83

the view from suburbia: Dead Kennedys, Washington DC, 6-5-83

It’s been said 14 is the influential age in the development of our musical tastes.  That was the case for me: I find I regularly return to the music that I explored and embraced as my own back around 1983.  It wasn’t just what I heard that has shaped my ideas about ‘good’ music, though,...
the misanthropy of solo metal

the misanthropy of solo metal

In some regards, the development of heavy metal over the last 40 years can be understood to chart key phases in pop-music consumption under late capitalism: from mass culture to subculture to individualized culture.  This arc can be seen, first and most obviously, from the vantage point of heavy metal fandom. As Will Straw has...
on the stroll: a book review of "The Chitlin' Circuit and the Road to Rock 'n' Roll" by Preston Lauterbach

on the stroll: a book review of “The Chitlin’ Circuit and the Road to Rock ‘n’ Roll” by Preston Lauterbach

Cities shape music, we know, but how does music shape cities? To be specific, how can a DIY music industry heat up urban economies, enliven public spaces, foster local idioms and local traditions of artistic practice, and even create jobs? This question suggests the policy criteria adopted by creative-city analysts, as well as the legacy...
institutionalizing utopia: the predicament of the music festival

institutionalizing utopia: the predicament of the music festival

These are fat days for music festivals, it seems.  Festivals for alternative music, heavy metal, electronic and dance, classical and jazz, festivals featuring music and film, festivals featuring music and academic lectures, festivals featuring acts who reunite just to play festivals—a whole lot of music festivals!  Not to mention the music festival’s baby brothers and...