Soundyngs: Conversations on the History of Scottish Music

Soundyngs is a blog of short-format articles and reviews, together with a resource directory signposting completed open-access digital research sources and specialist contacts in this field as these become known to us.  It aims to stimulate research into the history of Scottish music, broadly defined as music that has made a contribution in past times to cultural life within Scotland.

We have three goals:

  • to assist with the dissemination of historically orientated research into Scottish music both within and beyond the borders of Scotland;
  • to facilitate networking between those interested in the history of Scottish music;
  • to signpost online resources which may emerge from such research activity.

Research in this field is often curated in ways that do not allow for a comprehensive overview of the diverse musics of Scotland to be apparent.  Projects usually divide into period studies, or instrumental specialisms, or sit on one side or another of an imagined art/folk music dichotomy.  Our aim is to ensure that our working definition of what comprises “Scottish” is drawn as widely as possible, to include both indigenous musical sounds, musicians and behaviours, and also external influences on Scottish music that nevertheless impacted in any culturally significant fashion.   Contributions should take an historical perspective and must discuss music either as a noun or a verb: other than that, we aim to provide summaries, surveys, and signposts, and to suggest possible connections between existing conversations.  Our model in this respect is John Purser’s magisterial Scotland’s Music, which from its first edition in 1992 adopted a generous inclusivity in surveying the unique interactions between different kinds of musicking activity in Scottish contexts.

We welcome:

  • short articles (500-1200 words) summarising emerging research projects into Scottish music history or which raise research questions in ways that encourage productive conversations about possible research directions
  • reviews of published works, historically informed recordings and webpages that form research outputs from historical research into Scottish music
  • signposting suggestions for good-quality online resources on historic Scottish music that may be useful for those teaching or researching these topics