Conference puts pop music in its place
Why have some places had such an influence on popular music? This will be the topic of discussion at a University of Salford conference next week (5-7 September) which will bring together over 100 academics, postgraduate students and cultural commentators from around the world.
Pop music has always been affiliated with physical places – it’s one of the ways musicians express who they are and where they live. Madchester, Albion, Route 66, Strawberry Fields and Nashville are just some examples of the link between musical expression and geography.
Salford is an apt place to hold the conference with its proliferation of musical legends including Joy Division and New Order, Happy Mondays, John Cooper Clarke, Graham Nash and Ewan MacColl. The city’s influence on the history of popular music in the UK will be explored at the conference, with other sessions focusing on activism, jazz, folk, hip-hop, Englishness, Scotland and the USA.
The keynote speaker at the event is music journalist and author Barney Hoskyns. From his early days writing for Melody Maker and NME in the 1980s, Barney has written about pop culture and the arts for Vogue, Mojo, The Times, The Guardian, The Independent, Harper’s Bazaar and Rolling Stone. Barney will be talking in part about his new book, a history of Led Zeppelin, published in September.
Organiser Professor George McKay said: “To host the International Association for the Study of Popular Music 2012 conference at MediaCityUK is a real treat for Salford pop and rock scholars and fans.
“The University has a proud tradition of popular music scholarship—we inaugurated the first ever Professor of Popular Music in the UK many years ago, and music remains an important part of our teaching and research in the creative economy. We have scholars coming from around the world, to talk about music from tango to techno!”
Imagining Communities Musically: Putting Popular Music in its Place @ University of Salford, MediaCityUK, 5-8 September. Cost: £75 per day or £180 for 3 days (£140 student concession).