Live concert performance: An ecological approach

Adam Behr, Matt Brennan, Simon Frith, Emma Webster

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For the last decade we have been engaged in the study of the history, economics, and sociology of live music in Britain. In this article we will consider the value of “ecology” as an analytic concept (rather than just a buzzword) and compare an ecological account of the setting in which music happens to the use of previous spatial metaphors, from Durkheim’s milieus to Straw’s scenes. To illustrate our argument, we present case studies of three Scottish concerts: one in a small-scale venue (Glasgow’s King Tut’s), one in a mid-size venue (Edinburgh’s Queen’s Hall), and one in a large-scale venue, the 12,000-seater SSE Hydro.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-23
Number of pages19
JournalRock Music Studies
Issue number1
Early online date26 Jan 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • ecology
  • live music
  • venue
  • Queen’s Hall
  • King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut
  • SSE Hydro
  • Glasgow
  • Edinburgh

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