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 (now available from the British Library at http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?did=1&uin=uk.bl.ethos.543819). 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. The research was completed under the expert guidance of Dr Dai Griffiths and examined by Professor Simon Frith and Dr Jan Butler.
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.
Whilst juggling my career with the demands and pleasures of my young family I have held part-time lecturing posts at Oxford Brookes University, the University of Bristol, the University of Worcester and the University of Northampton. I currently teach at two universities, namely Buckinghamshire New University, where I lead the ‘Audio Cultures’ module, and Southampton Solent University, where I lead the Popular Music in Context module to a cohort of 180 students spanning the Music Journalism, Music Promotion, Music Performance and Music Production degree courses; I also supervise final year research and practical dissertations at both institutions. In 2005 I was awarded the Certificate in Associate Teaching in Higher Education (Oxford Brookes University) which subsequently led to Associate Membership of the Higher Education Academy. I also deliver guest lectures, conduct music-related research, write about music and act as a peer reviewer on behalf of various academic music related journals.
I am the author of the chapter titled ‘Defining Qualities: Making a Voice for Rock and Pop Music in the English Quality News Press’, in ‘Litpop: writing and popular music’ (Ashgate, 2014). Follow the link below for full details:
On a less formal note, in my spare time I enjoy singing with my local community choir, which performs a range of popular music from both past and present, at events across the Oxfordshire region (see if you can spot me in action in the pictures below).
I also run a small online business, The Cotswold Vintage Emporium (see www.cotswoldvintageemporium.co.uk), in order to indulge my fascination with late twentieth century fashion, homewares and popular culture.