Colin Lester and Kanya King MBE in conversation at Solent University

On 7th May 2019 the end of year music industry talk at Solent University comprised guest speakers Colin Lester, artist manager of various music acts including Craig David, and Kanya King MBE, founder of the MOBO Awards, in conversation with Prof. Paul Rutter, author of The Music Industry Handbook (2016).  Colin Lester kicked off with a highly informative talk on the death of the album, music streaming, the role of the music agent and the importance of currency conversion for musicians’ income streams.  Kanya King then delved into the fascinating details of her incredible personal journey which ultimately led her to create the MOBO Awards.  King also described the barriers she had faced in bringing her vision for the awards to fruition and illustrated the resilience which she has shown in the face of more recent challenges.

There was certainly no shortage of inspiration to be found here.  The event was not only hugely informative (I took copious notes!) but also served as a great means to help illustrate how some of the theory and history which my colleagues and I teach continues to apply to the music industry on a real-life basis.  The content of the session provided valuable fuel for subsequent discussions with students in seminars and tutorials and it was particularly rewarding to see music students pitching their questions at these well-known industry professionals and receiving honest answers and expert advice in return.

Thanks to all involved for such an inspiring event.


Published by Dr Jennifer Skellington

In 2010 I completed my PhD thesis entitled ‘Transforming Music Criticism? An examination of changes in music journalism in the English broadsheet press from 1981 to 1991’, at Oxford Brookes University. My research entailed face to face interviews with fourteen long-standing music journalists representing all music genres from the English quality press, the construction of a database cataloguing and analysing all music-related content from a sample of quality newspapers from the period 1981 to 1991 and the detailed discourse analysis of a sample of live music reviews. My key area of expertise is music criticism and music journalism, particularly relating to popular music (including rock, pop, jazz, world music), however my broader teaching and research specialisms cover a wide range of popular music related topics, particularly those associated with popular music and identity (race, gender, nationality, subcultures) and popular music and film. Since completing my PhD I have held associate lecturing posts at Oxford Brookes University, Oxford University, Solent University, Brunel University, the University of Bristol, Bucks New University, the University of Northampton and the University of Worcester.

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