The lost musical histories of Merthyr Tydfil

  • Paul Carr University of South Wales
Keywords: music curation, local music history, popular music memory

Abstract

This article focuses on an analysis of a one-month local music exhibition curated in 2018 and anearlier connected project which was implemented as part of the annual Being Human Festival,funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the British Academy. Although the MerthyrTydfil-based exhibition could be regarded as following in the footsteps of a tried and testedmethod of curating and exhibiting popular music narratives in public spaces, the week-long BeingHuman activities used memory collection and enactment activities to both depict and help understandhow local popular music histories can resonate not only with the participants who witnessedthem, but also a younger generation who were not born when the activities took place. Based onthe data compiled from both of these activities, the article initially presents an historical accountof the development of popular music in Merthyr Tydfil between 1955 and 1975. It subsequentlyproceeds to consider the potential impacts that undertakings such as exhibitions, memory collection,online communities and re-enactment activities can have on local communities.

Author Biography

Paul Carr, University of South Wales

Paul Carr is Professor in Popular Music Analysis at the Universityof South Wales. His research interests focus on theareas of musicology, the music industry and pedagogicalframeworks for music related education. Examples of recentpublications include an edited collection on Frank Zappa(2014), two chapters in Oxford Handbook of Music and Virtuality(2016) and a monograph on Sting (2017). AlongsideAllan Moore, he is currently in the closing stages of completingThe Bloomsbury Handbook of Rock Music Research (2020).

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Published
2020-01-24
How to Cite
Carr, P. (2020). The lost musical histories of Merthyr Tydfil. Popular Music History, 12(1), 112-140. https://doi.org/10.1558/pomh.39561