Other work by the authors
Irish Lady Sings The Blues
by McLaughlin & Braniff published in Made in Ireland (2020)
Made in Ireland: Studies in Popular Music serves as a comprehensive and thorough introduction to the history, sociology and musicology of 20th- and 21st-century Irish popular music.
The volume consists of essays by leading scholars in the field and covers the major figures, styles and social contexts of popular music in Ireland.
Each essay provides adequate context so readers understand why the figure or genre under discussion is of lasting significance to Irish popular music.
The book is organized into three thematic sections: Music Industries and Historiographies, Roots and Routes and Scenes and Networks.
The volume also includes a coda by Gerry Smyth, one of the most published authors on Irish popular music.
How Belfast Got the Blues - Towards an alternative history
by McLaughlin & Braniff published in Popular Music History (2017)
The authors consider what often stands as the foundational moment in Belfast's popular music history, and Irish rock more broadly: the ‘big bang’ moment of 1964 - the emergence of Van Morrison and Them and the accompanying ‘legend’ of the group’s residency at the Maritime Hotel.
The authors interrogate the existing history of this period revisit the dominant narrative, open-up its ideological implications and extend aspects of the discussion.
They also consider a little-documented aspect of Belfast’s popular music history, one which may both inform and problematize the existing account, thus challenging the established canon, and the accepted chronology, in significant ways.
Another Green World?: Eno, Ireland and U2
by Noel McLaughlin published in Popular Music History (2014)
This article explores a neglected area of popular music scholarship: the different aspects of auteurproducer Brian Eno’s often complex relationship with Irish rock band, U2 and their home nation.
It considers the cultural and political significance of Eno’s technical, aesthetic and philosophical innovations in his work with U2 in relation to wider debates about Irish cultural identity as articulated through music.
It also explores how U2 and the Irish context may have reciprocally influenced aspects of Eno’s approach to artistic production.
The article also seeks to situate these ideas within broader popular historical discourses that frame the Eno and U2 relationship.
Rattling out of control: A comparison of U2 and Joy Division on film
by Noel McLaughlin published in Film, Fashion & Consumption (2012)
This article integrates Popular Music Studies, Film Studies and Fashion Studies to offer a comparative analysis of Joy Division and U2 in the cinema.
It focuses primarily on the films Control (Corbijn, 2007) and Rattle and Hum (Joanou, 1988), and looks at how popular musical performance and sub-cultural style are intertwined with the representation of city space and the construction of metropolitan identities.
It does this via consideration of filmic style but in a manner sensitive to the broader sociopolitical and popular musical discourses that frame these representations.
The article argues that popular music’s relationship to the cinema, and to representations of place, has been much neglected in Film Studies. As such, it considers the rock/ performance/fashion/place nexus in some detail.
Rock and Popular Music in Ireland Before and After U2
by McLaughlin & McLoone published by Irish Academic Press Ltd (2012)
Accessibly written and well illustrated, this book explores Irish rock music's relationship to the wider world of international popular music through a detailed analysis of the Ireland's most prominent artists and bands - U2, Van Morrison, Sinead O'Connor, The Boomtown Rats, and Horslips - along with key musical movements including the Beat Scene, the Folk Revival, Northern Irish Punk, and Dance Music in Ireland.
It brings to the study of popular music the concerns of Irish Studies about national and cultural identity and, at the same time, enriches these debates by applying a focus on popular music culture to debates traditionally concerned with literature and drama.
The book focuses on the significance of music and music in performance, and it analyzes songs and albums, as well as live concerts on television and video/DVD. It presents a wealth of primary research to establish a detailed critical context, such as the music press in Ireland, the UK, and US.
The authors have interviewed key industry personnel, artists, and commentators, and their thoughts on Irish rock and pop are particularly interesting to the broader debate.
Hybridity and national musics: the case of Irish rock music
by McLaughlin & McLoone published in Popular Music (2000)
The authors explore a range of musical strategies in the work of some important and successful Irish artists and assess the ways in which these inhabit the spaces between ‘Irishness’ and the global culture of rock music.
They consider these texts as forms of hybridity, to locate them in their sociocultural contexts, looking at the discourse about them (especially in Ireland) and to assess their strategies and achievement against postcolonial concerns.
They choose texts that mobilise recognisably ‘Irish’ idioms and styles (especially aspects of traditional music) but which attempt to marry these to a more mainstream global rock sound.