'Live and Direct:' the Impact of Live Nation on Contemporary Popular Music Performance.
- The Reagan administration initiated an era of sweeping media deregulation that culminated in the Telecommunications Act of 1996, considered by many to be the most important piece of media policy in US history. In the wake of this broad agenda, a handful of large corporate entities, the largest being California-based Live Nation, have come to directly own most of this country's live music promotional ... read moreapparatuses. While the existing literature on media deregulation and consolidation does not sufficiently address live popular music, the field's dominating frameworks would suggest that by corporatizing and commodifying a media product, deregulation would have a decidedly negative impact on popular music performance. My research, the first that deals entirely with contemporary popular music performance, refutes that suggestion. Based on interviews with popular music performers on their experiences with Live Nation venues and promoters, my research characterizes the goals that popular musicians associate with their performances and arrives at a surprising consensus: that performers across the popular music spectrum feel that Live Nation does not compromise and actually enhances their ability to achieve their performance goals. My research expands the body of media deregulation theory to include popular performance, and my findings break from the ideologies that dominate the field, suggesting that live music requires a new framework and ultimately a new field of research.read less
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