Please find below a selection of my research undertaken during my MA in Music Industries at Birmingham City University.

My research focuses on the creative and cultural industries, and looks at how convergence and globalisation have been the driving force of the media industries. I have combined my career in audio production and the music industries with my personal interest in technology and cultural hybridity to create the following papers.

The Recording Industry as a Loss Leader: How Music Sales Are Used to Sell Other Goods 

As the technology behind distribution models has changed, so has the use of recorded music and its role as the industry’s own ‘Loss Leader’ product. Does that mean that recorded music is used simply as a strategy to push other, more profitable markets? It certainly drives consumption of other goods – such as hardware like the Gramophone and iPod – and products of other music divisions such as the publishing and live sectors.

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Building Ireland’s Cultural Identity: Politics, Economics and Diaspora 

The creation of Ireland’s identity has been the topic of much debate before and since the 1922 establishment of Ireland as a free state (Gillespie 2001; Byrne et al. 2009). The country’s economic and political landscapes have changed dramatically, while discourse in globalisation and Americanisation have heavily influenced music and other components of the creative industries. Combined with a history of emigration and a large diaspora, Ireland’s cultural identity has become a strained discussion of nationalism and post-nationalism, global politics and economics and what/ who makes up the Irish cultural and creative industries.

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The Cultural Meaning of Hammerstep 

The following case study aims to highlight aspects of cultural meaning by examining the Irish/hip- hop fusion group Hammerstep. This study intends to analyse the artistic model Hammerstep has chosen alongside the group’s cultural discourse methodology, while also examining the roles of their side initiatives, including street performances and viral video schemes.

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OpenEMI – Making Music App Development more Accessible 

In response to demand, EMI and development company The Echo Nest have partnered to create apps for their artists. Using a streamlined licensing system and content from the label’s artists stores in “Sandboxes”, the OpenEMI project aims to source elevator pitches for apps using their multimedia and approve the best. The arduous process of securing publishing rights will be facilitated by EMI, creating an appealing service for developers. This case study discusses the rise of the app, its use in the music industry and the ways in which the OpenEMI project is addressing the issues of content licensing for app development to circumnavigate complicated publishing processes.

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The Open Hybridity Project: Creating an Online Platform for Cultural Hybridity 

The Open Hybridity project aims to create a social media platform for communicating cultural fusion concepts, also known as cultural hybridity. The project focused on building a portal equipped with the communication and interaction tools necessary to allow a community to flourish. As technological innovation is now intrinsic to the music industry and other creative industries, it is important to understand how online interactions can help develop new opportunities and means for creativity. Through research, consultation and user testing, the project has developed to meet the needs of a niche community who already have a basic understanding of social networking and wish to use a platform which will facilitate more meaningful and constructive cultural connections, limiting distractions and increasing productivity.

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