The tough sell: Narrating the artist-hustler relationship

Peter Doyle*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Popular music studies has recently been enlivened by the turn to collaborative rather than individualist models of creativity and creative process: artists are seen in collaboration with each other, with auteur record producers, with writers and composers, and so on. Histories and analyses of the famous tight pairings of popular music-Lennon and McCartney, Jagger and Richards, Gilbert and Sullivanwill always have a head start in this project, in that their dual subjects are by definition de-centred, de-individualized, and often ripe for provocative or novel reinterpretation. Yet one binary structure that has resisted this sort of recasting is that of the artist and his or her dark commercial other-the entrepreneur, manager, 'hustler' or, particularly in earlier times, the 'producer', 'engineer' or 'session manager'. In this paper I will look at the narrative heritage of the relationship between star and hustler, and point tentatively to some nascent revisions to that construct, which, I will suggest, allow for more complex and more engaging ways of describing and narrating that relationship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-173
Number of pages9
JournalMusicology Australia
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011


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