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Musicians Union - women heavy metal fans

The Musicians Union: Laurie Taylor explores the history of musicians efforts to be seen as workers, as well as entertainers. Also, women heavy metal fans.

The Musicians Union: Laurie Taylor explores the history of musicians efforts to be seen as workers, as well as entertainers.
Martin Cloonan, Professor of Popular Music Politics at the University of Glasgow, drew on extensive archive and interviews with Union employees and members to provide a comprehensive assessment of the role of the MU in the nation's ballrooms, orchestras, recording studios and radio stations. They're joined by Caspar Melville, Lecturer in Global Creative and Cultural Industries, SOAS, University of London.
Also, women heavy metal fans. Rosemary Hill, Lecturer in Sociology at University of Leeds, examines the tensions between being a 'metal' fan and being a woman. From the media representation of women rock fans as groupies to the widely held belief that hard rock and metal is masculine, being a music fan is an experience shaped by gender. How do female fans negotiate their place in a male dominated music scene?
Producer:Jayne Egerton.

Available now

28 minutes

Jazz Me Blues

Back in the 1970s, when I lived in York, I had a Musicians' Union sticker on the back door of my mini-van which boldly demanded: Keep Music Live. Although I'd never have admitted it at the time, I'm now inclined to think that I only retained the sticker for so many years in the hope that it might suggest to passers-by that the van was actually being driven by someone who was himself a talented musician.

I could hardly maintain that my proclaimed love for live music was based on my experiences in Yorkshire. Night after night, along with my fellow jazz fans, Terry and Dave, we'd trawl around the pubs and clubs and hotel lounges in search of a group or a band that was doing something else than badly reproducing the hit songs of the moment.

I have profoundly miserable memories of sitting in the upstairs room of a pub (the room where the landlord invariably stored his bicycle), and desperately attempting to generate some audience enthusiasm for a solitary pianist who was trying to recreate a few Oscar Peterson licks on a piano that had long ago given up any pretence of tunefulness.

In today's programme I'll be meeting the author of a book about the history of the British Musicians' Union which not only gives some historical context and meaning to that Keep Music Live campaign, but also, paradoxically, helps to explain why so much of the live jazz music that my friends and I admired was simply not available at that time in York, or indeed in the rest of the country.

Also today: women, hard rock and metal music. That's at 4pm today or on our download.

A last word to regular readers of this newsletter. Thanks so much for all your funny and clever comments (they mean a lot to me). Do have a Happy Christmas and a great New Year!


Reading List

Players Worktime: A history of the British Musicians Union 1893-2013 by John Williamson and Martin Cloonan

Gender, Metal and the Media: Women Fans and the Gendered Experience of Music by Rosemary Hill


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