About Me
I'm a Canadian PhD student living in Scotland, where I study music, media, and culture at Stirling University.


My Work
Current:
Curriculum Vitae
PhD Abstract

Peer-reviewed articles:
The rough guide to critics: musicians discuss the role of the music press (Popular Music 25:2, 2006)

Conference papers:
Comparing the shaming of jazz and rhythm and blues in music criticism (Experience Music Project 2006)

Was Newport 1969 the Altamont of Jazz? The role of music festivals in shaping the jazz-rock fusion debate (Leeds International Jazz Conference 2006)

Down Beat vs. Rolling Stone: the battle for authority in the American music press, 1967-1970 (IASPM Biennial Conference 2005)

Web articles:
Sounds Prohibited
Brain Machines

CD reviews:
Proffessor Undressor
Manitoba

Current musical projects: Zoey Van Goey
Maritime Rock Opera Club

Contact
m.t.brennan at stir.ac.uk
Links
Friends With Websites:
Dru (The Dominion)
Sylvia Nickerson
Inez Templeton
Inez: the blog
Clark Richards
Tara Wells
Max Liboiron
John Haney
Eva Bartlett

Musical Friends:
David Myles
Jamie (Near Earth Astronaut)
Jay (Proffessor Undressor)
Jim (Shotgun and Jaybird)
Jon (Rhume)
Kirk (Orchard Hill Road)
Mark, Mike (Barriomatic Trust)
Matt Johnston
Pat (Random Andy)
Troy (Pimp Tea)

Archives
By Category:
academiks (3)
aural creativity (12)
books (1)
flicks (8)
inspiration (3)
mad science (4)
media theory (4)
music biz (10)
other (6)
personal (13)
powers that be (7)
travel (4)
visual creativity (9)
words (1)


By Month:
September 2006 (1)
July 2006 (1)
June 2006 (2)
May 2006 (1)
April 2006 (2)
March 2006 (1)
January 2006 (3)
December 2005 (1)
November 2005 (1)
October 2005 (1)
September 2005 (1)
August 2005 (1)
July 2005 (1)
June 2005 (1)
May 2005 (1)
April 2005 (1)
March 2005 (3)
February 2005 (3)
January 2005 (1)
December 2004 (1)
November 2004 (2)
October 2004 (5)
September 2004 (3)
August 2004 (1)
July 2004 (3)
June 2004 (3)
May 2004 (6)
April 2004 (6)
March 2004 (8)
February 2004 (7)
January 2004 (11)
December 2003 (2)

May 18, 2004

Dig hip-hop? Read this book

westsiders1.jpg

The best book I read recently was Westsiders by William Shaw. It's an account of the lives of seven young black men living in South Central Los Angeles, and particularly Compton. All of these men want to be famous rap stars, but the odds are stacked against them in an area ridden with violence and poverty.

Worthwhile reading for anyone who wants to learn more about the music which informed Eminem, 50 Cent, and the other stars who currently dominate the pop charts, and essential reading for anyone interested in hip-hop.

The amazon.com review: "What Shaw finds, apart from conspiracy theories, horrifying death rates and universal "dreaming of greatness", is desperately vulnerable men struggling with their fractured identities, often without fathers, caught up in the grimly violent struggles of gangs. It's all about colour: black or white, Blood red or Crip blue, as they either shoot bullets or word plays at their adversaries. You may prefer your beats unbroken or your jeans less baggy but that is precisely why this should prove an informative and challenging account of the people inside the genre, fabled for its oral tradition but here proving its worth on the page."

Posted by matt at May 18, 2004 11:10 AM