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Popular Music

Popular Music
Topics, Trends & Trajectories

October 2011 | 296 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This is the first textbook on Pop Music to be written after the start of the iPod era.

The book is organized in accessible sections which cover the main themes of research and teaching. It examines:

• The key approaches to understanding popular music

• The main settings of exchange and consumption

• The role of technology in the production of popular music

• The main genres of popular music

• The key debates of the present day

Barbazon writes with verve and penetration. Her approach starts with how most people actually consume music today and transfers this onto the plain of study.

The organization of the material enables teachers and students to shuffle from one topic to the next. Yet the book provides an unparalleled network to the core library of concepts and issues in the field. As such, it is the perfect study guide for undergraduates located in this exciting and expanding field.

Introduction: Walking on the Dance Floor
Listening to Music

Visualizing Music

Dancing to Music

Thinking about Music

Writing about Music

Music Spaces
Sonic Architecture/Soundscape

City Music and Urban Spaces

Recording Spaces

Clubs and Pubs

Soundtracks and Filmic Spaces

Music Video and Televisual Spaces

Radio, Podcasting and Listening Spaces

MP3 and Downloading Spaces

Instruments of/for Study
Guitar Cultures

Keyboard Cultures

Drumming and Percussion




Genre and Community


The Blues

Rock and Roll


Reggae and Ska



Punk and Indie

Hip Hop


House and Post-House Musics

World Music

Intellectual Property

Censorship and Regulation

Race, Appropriation and Commodification

Girl Groups and Feminism

Boy Bands and Men's Studies

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgenderist Musics

Digitization, User-Generated Content and Social Networking

Music: Politics, Resistance and Protest

Conclusion: Walking off the Dance Floor
Sonic Sources
Visual Sources

An incredibly wide-ranging critical account of popular music. The book is an essential resource for all staff and students in the field
Prof John Storey
Centre for Research in Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sunderland

One of the most thoughtful, inspirational and engaging popular music texts of recent years. It deserves to be well-thumbed by popular music students, academics and researchers alike. Insightful at every corner, the text covers a kaleidoscopic range of subjects - from country music to copyright, Madchester to Myspace - and delivers a wonderfully clear, authoritative and lively invitation to think and write about music. As pedagogically enriching as it is analytically sophisticated, the text not only describes current digital music cultures, but also suggests fruitful movements beyond current orthodoxies of popular music studies. A serious intervention that just so happens to be a clear and accessible textbook
Nick Prior
Senior Lecturer, Sociology, University of Edinburgh

Great book but covers only a little of what we look at.

Media Studies, Cardonald College
May 19, 2015

Covers a wide range of relevant topics and gives in depth insights to popular music.

Dr Steve Parker
School of Film, Music & Performing Arts, Leeds Beckett University
October 6, 2014

good book to aid those on course for reading material for extra reading and information

Miss Deborah Young
Work Ready People, hit
July 17, 2014

Interesting and detailed book which informs the reader about the historical factors of the music industry. It is easy to read and informative.

Miss Sharron Stillyards
health and social care, northlindsey college
June 25, 2013

A refreshing and original approach to studying the music industries

Professor Martin James
Faculty of Media, Arts & Society, Southampton Solent University
October 12, 2012

This is an enjoyable read that covers a wide range of topics and genres around popular music. I've used this for Level 4 which seemed most appropriate, though Level 6 students did find the debates section useful and engaging in seminar discussions.

Dr Stephanie Piotrowski
Department of Media, University of Teesside
August 29, 2012

Very good to be used as an introduction of popular music and media

Professor Dr. Christoph Jacke
Faculty for Cultural Studies, University of Paderborn
August 17, 2012

Well-written and engaging book. Insightful and covering a wide range of subjects that makes it essential for music industry/popular music students. A must-read, in my opinion.

Mrs Paula Cordeiro
Communications, ISCSP (UTL)
July 31, 2012

Provides students with useful tasters

Dr Donna Woodhouse
HWB, Sheffield Hallam University
July 2, 2012

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

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This title is also available on SAGE Knowledge, the ultimate social sciences online library. If your library doesn’t have access, ask your librarian to start a trial.