Pop music festivals and (cultural) policies – New IASPM Journal special issue

In this post, we’re introducing a special issue of the Journal of The International Association for the Study of Popular Music co-edited by the Live Music Exchange’s Martin Cloonan and Adam Behr, with Beate Flath. Festivals, along with live music in general, are increasingly a part of the broader political process and, relatedly, the cultural policy process. This timely issue approaches the politics of popular music festivals from a range of theoretical and geographical perspectives.  

A Tribute to Dave Laing

The Popular Music scholar and writer, Dave Laing died suddenly on 6th January 2019. Amongst many other things, Dave was a very good friend to Live Music Exchange, someone to whom we often turned to for advice and help. Both were always freely given in a wonderfully supportive way. In this post, we offer an LMX tribute to Dave.  

Fall Guy – Martin Cloonan

Mark E Smith, leader of English post-punk group The Fall, died on 24 January 2018. To mark the anniversary of Smith’s death Live Music Exchange co-founder Martin Cloonan provides some thoughts on the band’s live appearances.  

Sexual Violence at Gigs – Rosemary Lucy Hill

Our latest post, by Dr. Rosemary Lucy Hill, discusses recent research into sexual violence at gigs, and introduces the report and recommendations from the project ‘Healthy Music Audiences: Music, Gender and Health’.  

Mediation and Liveness in DJ Performance – Kim Ramstedt

This week’s blog by Kim Ramstedt is a discussion of issues related to the study of superstar DJs and follows the recent death of Swedish DJ Avicii. Superstar DJs frequently perform on the main stages of pop music festivals, and festivals built predominantly around DJ performances and electronic dance music attract record amounts of visitors. Yet, popular discourse around large-scale …  

Crunching the Numbers: DIY Touring in 2018 – David Rovics

David Rovics is a Portland-based singer songwriter of “Songs of Social Significance”. Originally published as a blog on his website, in this article David explains the economics of touring as a politically committed artist who still needs to pay the bills. We would like to thank David for permission to use this article. I suddenly feel compelled to do some …  

Rolling Stones tour: they may be older but time waits for no one – Adam Behr

This week’s blog is a repost of an article by Live Music Exchange’s Adam Behr in The Conversation following the recent announcement of a Rolling Stones tour. An article in Rolling Stone magazine described the legendary band – its near namesake – as “growing old angrily”. Its portrait of Mick Jagger referenced “age lines around his eyes … as old as …  

Is Glastonbury really running out of headliners? – Adam Behr

Today we feature a repost of an article by Live Music Exchange’s Adam Behr in The Conversation discussing the debate about headliners at Glastonbury and other festivals. Controversy around the Glastonbury line-up, given the vagaries of the British weather, is an even more reliable feature of the festival calendar than photographs of mud dwelling festival-goers. This year, Norman Cook, one of …  

Thinking About Gender And Festival Bookings – Chris T-T

This week’s blog post is by Brighton-based musician, Chris T-T, and was originally published on his website. In it, he examines the ongoing issue of the lack of diversity in festival line-ups and recommends looking further down the bill to better assess the future ‘direction of travel’ for gender diversity at festivals. Note that the original article was originally posted …