Who got that job?

May 7, 2004

Keith Negus
Readership/Professorship in Musicology

Job advertised in The Times Higher , May 9 2003

Those of a certain age may remember the acts that Keith Negus supported as a musician in the late 1970s and early 1980s. They included the Revillos, Theatre of Hate and Paul Young.

The bands he played with are less memorable but may, for some somewhere, bring back memories. They included the Coconut Dogs and Cane.

As professor of musicology at Goldsmiths College, he has in many ways come full circle since his early years in the pop industry.

After giving up on a pop career around 1982, Negus went to university as a mature student to study sociology. And, although his subsequent PhD was on the music industry, his first job was lecturing on media and communications at Leicester University.

He moved to Goldsmiths, still focusing on media and communications but with research interests in the music industry. Despite this, there was a certain distance between the media and communications discipline and music.

"I found I was getting more and more interested in music rather than solely about the context," he said.

"People started to say to me 'why aren't you in a music department'. That happened to coincide with changes in the music department at Goldsmiths."

Music studies generally had traditionally focused on issues such as composers, scores and arrangements. It is now more interdisciplinary, weaving in aspects of sociology and anthropology.

Negus will be closely involved in delivering Goldsmiths' new degree in pop music studies, which starts in the autumn. His research interests centre on contemporary music and how society and culture interact with its creation and performance.

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