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Submission Guidelines

The Journal of Popular Music Studies is an interdisciplinary online journal covering a wide range of approaches to popular music studies. Submissions are not limited to any disciplinary, methodological, or theoretical approach. Each submission is considered by external reviewers familiar with the topic as well as the field of popular music studies. The journal features peer-reviewed articles and book reviews along with album reviews and non-traditional content in the Field Notes section. The Journal of Popular Music Studies encourages a broad representation of disciplines, topics, and historical eras. In every case, preference is given to manuscripts that are challenging and innovative as well as clearly and persuasively written.

Articles should not be previously published and should demonstrate an original approach to the scholarly topic at hand. Submissions should not exceed a maximum of 10,000 words.  

Submission Guidelines

All manuscripts should be submitted through Scholastica at Authors will need to login using an existing Scholastica account or create a new one in order to submit. For an overview of working with Scholastica as an author, please consult the Author Guide provided by Scholastica. Any technical or software questions should be directed to Scholastica customer support. Please do not email manuscripts directly to the editors unless directed to do so.

Book review-related queries should be directed to Alyx Vesey at

Pitches for our Field Notes section should be submitted to This lively front-of-book section features non-peer-reviewed pieces of 1,500–7,500 words. Field Notes pieces include not just single-author essays and reviews but also more conversational and dynamic formats, such as virtual and transcribed discussions, conference reports, interviews, and multi-author forums. Because Field Notes pieces do not undergo peer review, we are often able to publish more swiftly than the more conventional academic publishing allows; thus we’re particularly enthusiastic about publishing pieces that take up topics of timely interest to the field of popular music studies or closely related areas of research. We are also keen to publish pieces that reflect conversations about popular music and sound studies taking place in non-academic or para-academic settings, in addition to scholarly conversations.

All other questions about the journal, including queries about non-article content (roundtables, creative work, pedagogical essays, et. al.) should be directed to the co-editors K.E. Goldschmitt ( and Elliott H. Powell (

Initial submission

Authors should submit the following materials for consideration:

  1. Abstract as MS Word file
  2. Article as MS Word file
  3. Image captions as MS Word file (optional)
  4. Images uploaded as individual files (optional)

Format Instructions

  • The author’s name (or authors’ names) should not appear on the manuscript itself or in the file names uploaded for submission. Additionally, in order to maintain anonymity, authors should cite their own works in the third person and should not include acknowledgments or personal notes in the text.
  • Abstracts and manuscripts must be typed and double spaced with at least one-inch margins on each side. Files should be set to print a maximum of twenty-five lines per page in twelve-point type, and the text should be left-justified.
  • Abstracts should be written in the third person. In no more than 250 words, the abstract should summarize the argument and methodological approach of the article.
  • Instead of providing footnotes, authors should include double-spaced endnotes to appear after the text of the article. As a rule, notes should not exceed two-thirds of the length of the text.
  • Manuscript pages should be numbered.
  • Single spacing should be used in all instances, after periods, colons, and semicolons.

General Guidelines

  • Use gender neutral language and pronouns wherever possible. Do not use the generic “he.”
  • Names and titles: Album and film titles should be italicized: Purple RainUnder the Cherry Moon
  • Spelling: Use American spellings (-ize, not –ise; -yze, not -yse), punctuation (e.g. “Dr.”), and musical terminology.
  • Punctuation: Commas and periods always appear inside quotation marks, but semicolons and periods appear outside (e.g. “this,” and “this.” “this”; and “this”:

Images, Tables, and Figures

Music transcriptions, song lyrics, photographs, tables, and other graphics can be included with an indication of placement in the text. Provide a separate document with captions. High resolution files will be required upon acceptance of an article. Authors are responsible for obtaining permissions for all copyrighted materials.

Article Citations

Citations should be prepared according to the Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition). This means citations should follow the notes and bibliography style, where the sourced text is indicated by a superscripted number that corresponds to a full citation as an endnote. The complete list of works cited should then appear alphabetically by name at the end of the article (include a discography or filmography if appropriate). Whereas note entries are structured with commas, bibliography entries use periods.  For more information about citation formatting, please refer to the Chicago online guide.

Notes should be formatted as follows:


Author (or editor), Title (city of publication including state or country if not commonly known): publisher, date of publication), page number(s)

Journal Article

Author, “Title of article,” Journal Title volume number (year of publication): page numbers.

Electronic Source

Include author, title, date of publication (if applicable), as well as the complete URL (date accessed not necessary).

Liner Notes

Artist/composer, liner notes to [album title], record label and catalog number [original release date] subsequent release date.

Sample endnotes for the following citations are provided below:

  1. Book
  2. Journal article
  3. Essay in a collection
  4. Electronic source
  5. Liner notes
  6. Personal communication

1. Alexandra Vazquez, Listening in Detail (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2013), 42.

2. Kirstie Dorr, “Afroperuvian Feminisms and Performance Geographies of Diasporicity, 1953-2013,” Journal of Popular Music Studies 29/4 (December 2017): 1-26

3. Sherrie Tucker, “Bordering on Community: Improvising Women Improvising Women-in-Jazz,” in The Other Side of Nowhere: Jazz, Improvisation, and Communities in Dialogue, ed. Daniel Fischlin and Ajay Heble (Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Pres, 2004), 258.

4. Barry Kernfeld, “Sun Ra [Blount, Herman (Poole); Blount, Sonny; Le Sony’r Ra],” Grove Music Online,

5. Philip Glass, liner notes to Music in Twelve Parts, Virgin 91311 (3CDs), [1980] 1988.

6. Barry Manilow, email correspondence with the author, 5 January 2018.


Wherever applicable, contributors are encouraged to provide references for musical recordings. Please use the following style:

Dylan, Bob. Highway 61 Revisited. Columbia 9189, 1965.

Williams, Mary Lou. Mary Lou’s Mass. Smithsonian Folkways SFW CD 40815, 2005.


Submission Acceptance: Author’s Agreement and Permissions

Upon acceptance, the manuscript will by copyedited to conform to the journal's house style. The managing editor will send the copyedited article to the author for review and approval; copyedited book reviews will be sent to the book review editor for review and approval. Prior to publication, all necessary permissions need to be secured and authors are required to sign an Author Agreement. 


If you have questions about the format of your manuscript or anything else about the submission process, please direct your query the co-editors K.E. Goldschmitt ( and Elliott H. Powell (


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