Our research into live music has thrown up a number of venue typologies. This blog post in our Live Music 101 series aims to critically evaluate what is on offer, drawing on industrial, sociological, and architectural perspectives; the post includes previously unpublished work by Simon Frith.
Following on from Lord Clement-Jones’ blog post about the Campaign Against Leafleting Bans, Dr Emma Webster’s reply is based on her personal experiences as a flyerer, and on her doctoral research into the promotion of live music. In this post, she identifies a number of reasons why flyering is a vital part of grassroots live music promotion, including branding, networks, and cost.
Lord Clement-Jones, one of the driving forces behind the Live Music Act 2012, is now involved in a campaign to protect small-scale cultural and community events from local authority restrictions on flyering. In this blog post, he explains why he believes that leafleting is a key civic freedom and one vital to grassroots events.
In today’s post Fabian Holt, of Roskilde University, uses the Live Music Exchange website to present a working paper on the evolution and organisational culture of mid-size venues in New York. Taking as his primary case study the Bowery Presents chain of venues he traces the gentrification process back to the Fillmore auditoriums, described last week by Steve Waksman. His analysis ties changes in venues audiences to narratives of ‘cool’ in modern business practice and consumer habits, along with their self-definition as distinctive and discerning.
This week’s guest post is by Steve Waksman, Associate Professor of Music and American Studies at Smith College and author of ‘Instruments of Desire: The Electric Guitar and the Shaping of Musical Experience’ and ‘This Ain’t the Summer of Love: Conflict and Crossover in Heavy Metal and Punk’.
He is currently researching the history of live music in the U.S. from the 19th century to the present and looks here at how archival material about Bill Graham’s legendary Fillmore illustrates changes and tensions in audience behaviour at rock concerts in the 1960s.
Nathan Clark, general manager and promoter at the award winning Brudenell Social Club in Leeds, talks here about its history, its unique status and the DIY ethic at its heart. He also touches on the Leeds music scene more generally and the wider relationship between promoters, venues, acts, government and the academy.
The UK live music industry conference – Live UK Summit 2012 – was held at the Radisson Blu Portman Square in London last week. Three representatives from Live Music Exchange – Adam Behr, Matt Brennan, and Emma Webster – attended the event. This post contains a summary of the key things they learned there.
In the third of our series on the theories that underpin our research into live music, Matt Brennan and Emma Webster attempt to define the promoter and how they operate, in an extract from ‘Why Concert Promoters Matter’, originally published in Scottish Music Review in 2011. The authors analyse existing accounts of live music promoters and offer their own analysis of what a promoter is and does, concluding that promoters may use one or more of three basic models of promotion within rock and pop: ‘independent’, ‘artist-affiliated’, and ‘venue’.
Today’s post by Professor John Izod, of the University of Stirling, has a historical bent and concerns the fate of musicians employed by cinemas in the 1920s. In many ways the issues facing musicians then were a world apart from those of today although one of the advantages of historical research is that it allows us to take a step back and adopt a broader view, which can reveal patterns that pertain over the longer term – to look back at the resonances between the disruptions to our current status quo and those that it brought about in the past.