Popular Music History, Vol 7, No 1 (2012)

Mapping live provisions in Welsh-language rock, 1978–80

Craig Owen Jones
Issued Date: 5 Feb 2013


The article entails an analysis of the Welsh-language live popular music scene in the late 1970s. Composed of amateurs motivated by a desire to promulgate the Welsh language within the linguistic domain of youth popular music culture, Welsh-language popular music of this period was overwhelmingly dominated by rock artists such as Geraint Jarman, Eliffant, and Y Trwynau Coch (The Red Noses), whose pioneering national tours of Wales (1978, 1979, 1980) emulated those of Y Blew (The Hair) ten years earlier, and popularized the notion of touring, as opposed to gigging at weekends, for their contemporaries. Utilizing geospatial analysis techniques, the article examines live opportunities for bands in the period immediately preceding the late 1970s, and advances possible explanations for the observed development of provisions for Welshlanguage youth entertainment.

Download Media

PDF (Price: £17.50 ) HTML (Price: £17.50 )

DOI: 10.1558/pomh.v7i1.53


Aitchison, J., and Harold Carter. 2004. Spreading the Word: The Welsh Language 2001. Talybont: Y Lolfa.
Bennett, A. 2004. ‘Music, Space, and Place’. In Music, Space and Place: Popular Music and Cultural Identity, ed. S. Whiteley, Andy Bennett and Stan Hawkins, 2–7. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Davies, G., and John Davies. 2005. Hewl: Stori Geraint Griffiths. Landysul: Gomer.
Finnegan, R. 1989. The Hidden Musicians: Music-making in an English Town. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Frith, S. 1978. The Sociology of Rock. London: Constable.
Hesmondhalgh, D. 1997. ‘Post-Punk’s Attempt to Democratise the Music Industry: The Success and Failure of Rough Trade’. Popular Music 16: 255–74. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0261143000008400
Hill, S. 2007. ‘Blerwytirhwng?’: The Place of Welsh Pop Music. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Jones, C. O. Forthcoming 2013a. “Ar Y Brig Unwaith Eto’: Siartiau Pop Iaith-Gymraeg Cynnar’ (“At The Top Once Again’: Early Welsh-language Pop Charts’). Gwerddon 13 (April).
—Forthcoming 2013b. ‘Brwydr Iaith, Brwydro Iaith: Terminoleg y Byd Pop Cymraeg fel Modd Protest’ (‘Struggling with a Language in the Language Struggle: Terminology in the Welsh Pop World as a Method of Protest’). Gwerddon.
Lahusen, C. 1993. ‘The Aesthetic of Radicalism: The Relationship between Punk and the Patriotic Nationalist Movement of the Basque Country’. Popular Music 12: 263–80. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0261143000005717
Llewellyn, M. 2000. ‘Popular Music in the Welsh Language and the Affirmation of Youth Identities’. Popular Music 19: 319–39. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0261143000000192
Lynge, Birgit. 1981. Rytmisk Musik i Grønland. Aarhus: PubliMus.
Tomos, G. 1979. Sgrech ’79. Penygroes: Cyhoeddiadau Mei.
—1980. Sgrech ’80. Penygroes: Cyhoeddiadau Mei.
Toynbee, J. 2000. Making Popular Music: Musicians, Creativity and Institutions. London: Arnold.
Wallis, Roger, and Krister Malm. 1983. ‘Sain Cymru: The Role of the Welsh Phonographic Industry in the Development of a Welsh Language Pop/Rock/Folk Scene’. In Popular Music 3: Producers and Markets, ed. Richard Middleton and Trevor Horn, 77–105.
Wyn, H. 1977. Doedd Neb Yn Becso Dam: Hanes, Lluniau a Chaneuon Edward H. Dafis. Gwynedd: Cyhoeddiadau Sain.
—2002. Be Bop a Lula’r Delyn Aur: Hanes Canu Poblogaidd Cymraeg. Talybont: Y Lolfa.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Equinox Publishing Ltd - 415 The Workstation 15 Paternoster Row, Sheffield, S1 2BX United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 (0)114 221-0285 - Email: info@equinoxpub.com

Privacy Policy