I specialize in musical culture since 1900, with a focus on sound technology and an approach that combines music studies with media studies and cultural sociology.
My current project is called Decomposed: The Political Ecology of Music (MIT Press, forthcoming 2019). It's about the history of what recordings are made of, and what happens to those recordings when they are disposed of. I focus on three materialities—shellac, plastic, data—which correspond to five of the main recording formats since 1900: 78s, LPs, cassettes, CDs, MP3s. Early versions of this project have been published in Popular Music (2015) and Où va la musique (2016).
I am also coediting a related book called (for now) Audible Infrastructures: Music, Sound, Media (Oxford University Press, forthcoming). It looks at the social life and social death of various musical commodities in terms of three phases: resources and manufacturing, shipping and circulation, disposal and waste. We ask how these phases influence and respond to musical conventions, environmental realities, and political-economic conditions in industrializing and industrialized parts of the world.
Most of my other publications are about histories, cultures, and theories of sound reproduction. I coedited Living Stereo: Histories and Cultures of Multichannel Sound (Bloomsbury 2015) and I coauthored work on gender and social inequalities in music technology for Twentieth-Century Music (2015) and the Contemporary Music Review (2016).
Music sociology is my other main interest—especially the field's pasts and prospects—and here I coedited The Routledge Reader on the Sociology of Music (Routledge 2015).