Popular Music Theory and Practice

Hudds Logo

Queensgate, Huddersfield, UK, HD1 3DH

3 – 5 September 2018

This is a joint conference arranged by four organisations:

  • International Association for the Study of Popular Music UK & Ireland Branch (IASPM UK&I)
  • Association for the Study of the Art of Record Production (ASARP)
  • Dancecult: Electronic Dance Music Culture Research Network
  • International Society for Metal Music Studies (ISMMS)

Keynote Speakers are:

Andrew Scheps is a Producer who has worked with Metallica, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Jay Z and Adele.

Anne Danielsen is Professor of Musicology and Director of RITMO Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Rhythm, Time and Motion at the University of Oslo. She has published widely on rhythm, digital technology, and mediation in post-war popular music and is the author of Presence and Pleasure: The Funk Grooves of James Brown and Parliament (2006), Digital Signatures: The Impact of Digitization on Popular Music Sound (with Ragnhild Brøvig-Hanssen, 2016), and the editor of Musical Rhythm in the Age of Digital Reproduction (2010).

Franco Fabbri is a musicologist, musician and broadcaster based at the the University of Milan and Parma Conservatory, and is Visiting Professor at the University of Huddersfield. He is the current Chair of IASPM.

Hosted  by the University of Huddersfield, this event combines the IASPM UK&I Biennial Conference, with the 13th Art of Record Production Conference (ARP), a conference of ISMMS, and feature the additional participation of Dancecult. The theme of the conference is Crosstown Traffic: Popular Music Theory and Practice.

A recurrent theme within popular music studies has been discussion of how the field can integrate different disciplines and professions, for example exploring both music and its context; involving both practitioners and researchers; and encouraging interdisciplinary and collaborative work. Many different issues make such approaches challenging, and various different popular music focused subject organisations have developed somewhat independently of one another. This conference brings four such groups together, to exchange knowledge, collaborate, and to encourage crosstalk.

Proposals for presentations, discussion panels and posters were invited that are relevant to recent developments in any of the subject organisations, especially those that explore theory and/or practice. Applications were particularly welcomed that cut across the interests of those involved, and that explore:

  • two of more of: popular music studies; electronic dance music cultures, metal; or record production
  • musicians and researchers
  • music and its contexts
  • popular music theory and practice
  • practice based or practice led research
  • interdisciplinary approaches
  • interprofessional research
  • issues relating to identity or ethnicity
  • gender or sexuality studies that reach across boundaries
  • political developments affecting multiple contexts
  • music industry developments affecting wider musical or cultural contexts
  • technological mediation
  • performative or embodied understandings

Other innovative proposals are welcomed that are related to, but not limited to:

  • popular music studies and/or practice
  • record production (interpreted in the broadest sense): the relationships between the production of recorded music and for example practice, business, education, gender and diversity
  • metal music, practice and cultures
  • electronic dance music and its cultures

Organising committee:

IASPM UK&I: Rupert Till

ARP: Katia Isakoff, Shara Rambarran

ISMMS: Karl Spracklen

Dancecult: Graham St. John

University of Huddersfield: Jan Herbst, Austin Moore, Lisa Colton, Toby Martin, Catherine Haworth, Mark Mynett, Leon Clowes

Papers are either:

  • A session (a collection of 3 or 4 papers on a specific subject featuring presenters collected together by the proposer)
  • A paper (20 minutes followed by times questions)
  • A poster

All presenters will need to be members of either IASPM, ASARP or ISMMS or you need to join one of these organisations before the conference.

Huddersfield is in Northern England, close to Manchester and its airport, and near the M62 motorway. Accommodation will be available in student halls of residence nearby and local hotels/B’n’Bs. 

The conference has been supported by:

Popular Music Studies Research Group, University of Huddersfield

Centre for Music, Culture and Identity, University of Huddersfield

Historic England

Historic England

Intellect Publishing


Emerald Publishing


Equinox Publishing