Sunday, 14 December 2014

"Locating the canon in Tamworth" winner of the 2014 Rebecca Coyle Prize

The International Association for the Study of Popular Music Australia-New Zealand (IASPM-ANZ) Branch Conference was recently held in Dunedin, New Zealand. It was announced during the conference that the 2014 Rebecca Coyle Prize for the best paper on popular music in the Australia-New Zealand region published in 2013 was awarded to my article, co-authored with Alison Huber, called 'Locating the canon in Tamworth: Historical narratives, cultural memory and Australia's "Country Music Capital"'.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Rockmuseum Munich - the highest DIY museum in the world?

Although last month my data collection for the project officially concluded, a brief trip to Munich, Germany, has enabled me to expand my fieldwork sites by one with a visit to Rockmuseum Munich. No interviews were conducted here but it was a delight to discover this little gem tucked away in a famous Munich tourist attraction.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Data collection concludes

The fieldwork stage of this research has now come to an end. This blog post gives a brief 'statistical' overview of the fieldwork.

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Collaborations with colleagues at Birmingham City University

This month should have seen me visiting the UK and Ireland for events co-organised with colleagues from Birmingham City University. Circumstances meant I had to stay in Australia but the events went on in my absence. Accounts of both events have been helpfully blogged by Jez Collins.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Popmuseum - a museum and archive of popular music in the Czech Republic

My travels for this research have already taken in a host of countries - Australia, Austria, Germany, Iceland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Switzerland, UK and USA. My latest destination is the Czech Republic where today I made a visit to Prague's Popmuseum, located in District 2. 

Friday, 13 June 2014

The Ramones Museum in Berlin

After my successful trip to Germany last year visiting the Lippmann + Rau Musikarchiv in Eisenach and the Klaus Kuhnke Archiv fur Populare Musik in Bremen, it is great to be able to return to this hot house of popular music preservation; this time to Berlin to see the Ramones Museum. This is only the second artist-dedicated museum I have visited for this research, the other one being KD's Elvis Presley Museum in New Zealand, and the two examples of this kind of heritage enterprise are very different.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Preserving the music history of the Ocean State - the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame

I'm writing this during a layover at Washington Dulles airport, having arrived this morning from Rhode Island en route back to Australia following a successful two weeks of fieldwork. I was in Rhode Island to visit the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame. Located in Pawtucket, the Hall captures "the Ocean State's rich musical history".

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Radical Archives conference at NYU

I'm in New York City to attend the 'Radical Archives' conference presented by the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU, curated by Mariam Ghani and Chitra Ganesh, and held on 11-12 April in the NYU Cantor Film Centre. As the first "archival" conference I have attended I was interested to see how its concerns intersected with my own approach to thinking about the DIY practices and processes of the institutions that are the focus of my research, particularly because the conference was focused on activist archives. 

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Project in the news

Turns out the story of my visit to the Heart of Texas Country Music Museum made the front page of this weeks Brady Standard-Herald

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

The Sarasota Music Archive: a DIY institution housed in a County Library System

I had arrived in Sarasota, Florida, with nothing lined up for my fieldwork. I'd been emailing the Sarasota Music Archive to try and set up some interviews but hadn't received any replies. Yesterday morning, then, it was a case of trying my luck by turning up on the Archive's doorstep and hoping for the best...

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Preserving traditional country music in the heart of Texas

There is no time for jet lag on this fieldwork trip to the United States of America. I flew into Dallas Fort Worth on Wednesday and then onto San Angelo Airfield before finally arriving late evening into Brady, Texas (by a stretch limo, no less) - Brady being the home of the Heart of Texas Country Music Museum, a museum dedicated to "preserving and promoting traditional country music".

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Abstract accepted for the On Collecting conference

I'm looking forward to visiting Edinburgh in July for the 'On Collecting: Music, Materiality and Ownership' conference, where I will be presenting a paper in the panel "Formats and the act of collecting". The conference will be held at the National Museum of Scotland.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Forthcoming fieldwork in the USA

Now that I’m back from New Zealand another fieldwork trip is in the planning. In April I will be heading to the USA for a whirlwind stint of fieldwork that will see me visiting Texas, Florida, New York and Rhode Island.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Barry and Judy Skinner's Hector Country Music Heritage Museum on New Zealand's South Island

What is it about New Zealand’s west coast that makes it such a hub of DIY music museums? Yesterday I made a visit to the Hector Country Music Heritage Museum in the Buller district of the South Island. Another privately owned and operated museum, this one is run by musician and radio DJ Barry Skinner with the support of his wife Judy.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Elvis in New Zealand - a visit to KD's Elvis Presley Museum

Yesterday evening I visited KD’s Elvis Presley Museum, a private museum dedicated to 50s and 60s rock’n’roll. The museum is owned and run by Kevin “KD” Wasley. As the brochure states, KD “has been an avid collector of Elvis records and memorabilia since 1959. Born in Hawera, painter and paperhanging contractor by trade, but his pride and joy is the Elvis Presley Museum.” The museum can be found in the converted garage of his home in Hawera on New Zealand’s north island.

Monday, 10 February 2014

On the road in New Zealand: a visit to the Taranaki Country Music Hall of Fame

I’m currently in New Zealand doing a road trip that sees me visiting DIY museums on the west coast of both the north and south islands. I arrived in Manaia, North Island, after a somewhat harrowing journey driving the Forgotten World Highway  – 150km stretch of tight winding road complete with fallen tree and boulder hazards, unsealed stretches, and a one lane pitch black dirt tunnel. By the time I arrived at the Taranaki Country Music Hall of Fame my nerves were a little frayed!

Monday, 6 January 2014

Routledge to publish edited collection on DIY music archives and museums

A great start to the new year for the project with confirmation that my book contract is signed, sealed and delivered for the edited collection on DIY music archives and museums. The book, which I hope will hit the shelves by late 2015, will be called Preserving Popular Music Heritage: Do-it-Yourself, Do-it-Together and will be in the Routledge Research in Music book series.