Interesting: The Sociology of Music Curation

Anyone who has ever created a playlist or mixtape knows how easy it is to get bogged down deciding on what to include. It gets even harder when you try to create playlists for other people, the tastes of whom are not your own. These difficulties of finding the right next song are the topic of this post at

For the past few months, on and off – more off than on, but with at least some degree of consistency – I’ve been working on my next book. So far, it’s pretty much just a collection of notes, thoughts, a few interviews with some interesting people and a draft chapter structure I’m reasonably pleased with. Nothing to write home about, though here I am – writing home.

That said, I think it’s starting to come into focus to the extent I can really start talking about it as a real thing. Yes, it’s still a long way off, and sure, saying “I’m writing a book” is not really the same thing as writing a book – but I feel like it’s starting to take some sort of shape in my head, which is, I expect, the first of the places it needs to start doing that.

So, but the reason I mention it is that I’d like it to be a well-informed and well-researched piece of work that brings together thoughts other than just my own. I’m reading a lot around the subject and asking some experts for their ideas and experiences, but it feels like it’s time to cast the net a bit wider for input – and this is exactly the sort of thing that I suspect lots of people have deeply held opinions and thoughts floating around to contribute – and probably some advice for further reading, data or analysis.

The book’s essentially a sociology of music curation. It’s about how we make meaning from music by putting it in an order.

Keep reading.


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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