Calling on forum expertise

As some may know, when I'm not hanging around on here, obsessing about Kidderminster Harriers or listening to groovy sounds, I'm a lecturer in political science. I'm currently trying to break out of my research ghetto (opposition and protest in Russia) by writing a paper on protest music (tentatively entitled 'Mixing pop and politics: the protest song is alive and well in the Trump-Brexit era). One thing I want to do is test some theories about the potential political impact of music in terms of consolidating beliefs, mobilisation and conversion and ideally would like to do this through an online survey of a particular artists' fans. I had hoped to be able to access fans of either or both Hurray for the Riff Raff or Kate Tempest via facebook or twitter but am not getting much help from their respective managements. Can anyone suggest another artist who might be classesd as 'political' in a broad sense who might be open for participation? Billy Bragg is the obvious target but is too obvious!    

Ta xx

Thanks for both suggestions. Don't know much about Will Varley but will check him out. 

DBT is a good idea but like HFTRR and Kate Tempest it might be difficult to get past the management - worth a try though as like you suggest, they're not preaching to the converted as much as others (although I'll be arguing that 'preaching to the converted' is itself an important political act).


Keep 'em coming.


Also any suggestions to my growing spotify protest song list?

Which I'd share the link to if I cou;d work ouit how to do it!

Mr.Bragg conveniently appears in the Babbling Tongues.

B.Dolan comes to mind, rapper, activist and filmmaker in the US, saw him years ago supporting Scroobius Pip, followed his stuff ever since. Very politically active and seems to respond to messages on Facebook

Julian Cope has certainly had his political moments - was very active in the Newbury Bypass protests and anti poll tax.

Showing my age a bit there too...

you could take a look at the list of folks who've contributed to 'our first 100 days'

a record made specifically to support organisations whose funding will be at threat under the trump administration

not all of the artists are overtly political - some more than others, obviously

but contributing to this compilation is an inescapably political act

so it may be a good place to start and then whittle it down to the more particularly polemic among them

(using 'polemic' as an adjective?  i'm dubious...)

Do you need to go via management? If it's a survey of fans can you not go straight to them?

If you're looking to analyse real effect you'll probably want someone 'big' so there should be forums for fan engagement.

Beyonce, Kendrick, U2 ?????

Have you looked at Nick Crossley's recent work? Different to what you are trying to do, no doubt, but something I expect you will / have find / found interesting. Also, I wonder if, given what I imagine you are trying to do, you are putting the cart before the horse. Perhpas better to look for the (political) groups and then trace their musical connextions. 


FInally, maybe folk music - the young 'uns? - might be worth looking at? Not sure if music today is that much of a unit of political organisation. Perhpas the last time was the free parties of mid-90s ish? 

This may be too late for your needs by now- sorry! Not the most popular band on here but Manic Street Preachers are 'political' and are fairly  approachable, also have an active fan account on twitter. Also, are you interested only in name bands? Lot of smaler political bands. might be worth looking at urban and grime- there's a fairly active scene in Cardiff For example. What sort of theory are you looking at? Sounds interesting though.

Hi Cyfarthfa!

I did wonder about MSPs and was probably deterred by the fact that I really don't like them which is hardly a rigorous research principle is it? Not only interested in name bands. The original idea was to use Hurray for the Riff Raff as a case study (the Navigator being described as the first political album of the Trump era) but am not getting anywhere on that front. Less well-known artists may be a better bet. I ran a survet past followers of Will Varley but didn't get enough responses. Grace Petrie seems like a possibilit.

In terms of theory I've spent weeks poring through a lot of unfamiliar literature (the obvious stuff - Street, Frith etc) but settled on a book by Rosenthal and Flacks (Playing for Change) who use a framework I think I can use - measuring the exten to which music serves to consolidate/re-affirm, educate, convert and recruit.

Might have to put it on the back burner for a while now and concentrate on the boring bread-and-butter stuff about sodding Putin!

We are going to the arts festival in Hebden Bridge and one of the events is Dave Randall [ guitarist from Faithless] doing a talk and reading from his book----Sound System-The Political Power of Music.Might be of interest to you.

Late to the thread, always, but along the same vein as B. Dolan, who is amazing, Scroobius Pip... And again pretty obvious but massive attack, especially their live shows. 

This is excellent work you're doing Krasnyi ☺️

if you are going to venture into urban music - which i think is interesting as that audience has long been considered non-political in terms of party politics (as opposed to, for instance, social justice issues) - then akala is a great starting point

(he's ms dynamite's younger brother if that means anything to you)

he just wrote a column for the guardian about having chosen not to vote at all in all previous elections he's been eleigible for - but corbyn having changed his mind:

but has also made a few TV appearances - arguing with UKIP idiots

and here he is on 'british values'

and don't forget the frankly brass eye tastic grime4corbyn website

which is - astonishingly - real

Not quite sure why I didn't suggest them first time around, but the cracking new album 'The Underside of Power' reminds me to do so now.

the project has taken a back seat as I had to write a paper on the boring Russian parliamentary elections of 2016 but I'll get back to it soon so thanks for all the suggestions - keep 'em coming!