Skip to main content
School of Arts and Media

Tim Wise

Senior lecturer in musicology


Born and educated in Texas, I studied music, English, and linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin and North Texas State University (now University of North Texas) in Denton. I have worked variously as a rock musician, as a concert piano tuner for Steinway and Sons, and as an academic (in the USA, the People’s Republic of China, and the UK). My PhD is from the University of Liverpool for a thesis on the semiotics of yodelling in popular music.


At the undergraduate level, I teach Style & Genre, Interpreting Popular Music, Music & Society, and Advanced Musicology. I also supervise level 6 dissertations. At the postgraduate level, I supervise research leading to the MPhil and the PhD.

Research Interests

Music history, music semiotics, music and ideology, music and discourse.

Qualifications and Memberships

BA (English and Music), MA English literature, MA English language and Linguistics, HND Musical Instrument Technology (Piano), MA Popular Music Studies, PhD Music

Member of International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM)

Member of Network for the Inclusion of Music in Music Studies (NIMiMS)



2016. Yodeling and Meaning in American Music, University Press of Mississippi

Peer-reviewed articles:

2007. Yodel Species: a typology of falsetto effects in popular music vocal styles’, Radical Musicology, Vol. 2.

2008. ‘Lullabies, Laments and Ragtime Cowboys: Yodeling at the Turn of the Twentieth Century’, American Music, Vol. 26.

2010. ‘Jimmie Rodgers and the Semiosis of the Hillbilly Yodel’, Musical Quarterly, Vol. 93, No.

2012. ‘How the Yodel Became a Joke’ Popular Music, Vol. 31.

2012 ‘From the Mountains to the Prairies and Beyond the Pale: American Yodeling on Early Recordings’, Journal of American Folklore, 125 (497), pp. 358-74.

Various entries for the Continuum Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World, Vol. 2 and 8.