Brian is a historian of the modern US South, the civil rights movement, popular music, the 1960s, and Anglo-American cultural relations. He is Northumbria University’s first Professor in American Studies and currently Chair of the British Association for American Studies. Previously, he held the Chair in American Studies at the University of Manchester (2006-2012), served as Head of the Department of History at the University of Florida (2000-2006), and taught at the Universities of Newcastle upon Tyne (1991-2000) and Durham (1990-91).
Brian is currently working on 3 book projects: A&Rchitects: Artist and Repertoire Men and the Creation of American Roots Music (co-authored with Patrick Huber); a book about Martin Luther King's 1967 visit to Newcastle upon Tyne; and She Loves Y’All, a book about the Beatles and the US South.
He is also developing a MOOC on the American South.