Paula Rowe (University of South Australia, Australia)

Heavy Metal Youth Identities: Researching the Musical Empowerment of Youth Transitions and Psychosocial Wellbeing

ISBN: 978-1-78756-850-1, eISBN: 978-1-78756-849-5

Publication date: 1 October 2018


Rowe, P. (2018), "Prelims", Heavy Metal Youth Identities: Researching the Musical Empowerment of Youth Transitions and Psychosocial Wellbeing (Emerald Studies in Metal Music and Culture), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. i-vii.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018 Emerald Publishing Limited

Half Title Page

Heavy Metal Youth Identities: Researching the Musical Empowerment of Youth Transitions and Psychosocial Wellbeing

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Emerald Studies in Metal Music and Culture

Series Editors: Rosemary Lucy Hill and Keith Kahn-Harris

International Editorial Advisory Board: Andy R. Brown, Bath Spa University, UK; Amber Clifford-Napleone, University of Central Missouri, USA; Kevin Fellezs, Columbia University, USA; Cynthia Grund, University of Southern Denmark; Gérôme Guibert, Université Sorbonne Nouvelle, France; Catherine Hoad, Macquarie University, Australia; Rosemary Overell, Otago University, NZ; Paula Rowe, University of South Australia; Niall Scott, University of Central Lancashire, UK; Karl Spracklen, Leeds Beckett University, UK; Heather Savigny, De Montford University, UK; Nelson Varas-Diaz, Florida International University, USA; Deena Weinstein, DePaul University, USA

Metal Music Studies has grown enormously over the last eight years from a handful of scholars within Sociology and Popular Music Studies, to hundreds of active scholars working across a diverse range of disciplines. The rise of interest in heavy metal academically reflects the growth of the genre as a normal or contested part of everyday lives around the globe. The aim of this series is to provide a home and focus for the growing number of monographs and edited collections that analyse heavy metal and other heavy music; to publish work that fits within the emergent subject field of metal music studies; that is, work that is critical and interdisciplinary across the social sciences and humanities; to publish work that is of interest to and enhances wider disciplines and subject fields across social sciences and the humanities and to support the development of Early Career Researchers through providing opportunities to convert their doctoral theses into research monographs.

Published Titles and Forthcoming Publications

Pauwke Berkers and Julian Schaap, Gender Inequality in Metal Music Production

Ruth Barratt-Peacock and Ross Hagen (Eds.), Medievalism and Metal Music Studies: Throwing Down the Gauntlet

Catherine Hoad (Ed.) Australian Metal Music: Identities, Scenes and Cultures

Peter Pichler, Metal Music and Sonic Knowledge in Europe: A Cultural History

Karl Spracklen, Metal Music and the Re-Imagining of Masculinity, Place, Race and Nation

Interested in publishing in this series? Please contact Rosemary Hill and Keith Kahn-Harris

Title Page

Heavy Metal Youth Identities: Researching the Musical Empowerment of Youth Transitions and Psychosocial Wellbeing


Paula Rowe

University of South Australia, Australia

United Kingdom – North America – Japan India – Malaysia – China

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley BD16 1WA, UK

First edition 2018

Copyright © 2018 Emerald Publishing Limited

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No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, transmitted in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without either the prior written permission of the publisher or a licence permitting restricted copying issued in the UK by The Copyright Licensing Agency and in the USA by The Copyright Clearance Center. Any opinions expressed in the chapters are those of the authors. Whilst Emerald makes every effort to ensure the quality and accuracy of its content, Emerald makes no representation implied or otherwise, as to the chapters’ suitability and application and disclaims any warranties, express or implied, to their use.

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library

ISBN: 978-1-78756-850-1 (Print)

ISBN: 978-1-78756-849-5 (Online)

ISBN: 978-1-78756-851-8 (Epub)


Above all, I am deeply grateful to the metal youth who worked with me on this project. There would be no book without them. But more than that, it was such a privilege getting to know them – they have enriched my life considerably. I’m so pleased I now get to share much of what they taught me in this book. In fact, I’m grateful to all the young people I’ve worked with over the years who have helped me to form various understandings of young people’s lived experiences in the social world. Their stories inspire and motivate me to keep championing youth affairs at every opportunity.

Many thanks to all the metal scholars around the globe who have generously offered me wisdom, resources, opportunities and encouragement over the last 10 years. Our global collegial environment, born of necessity, is something special to be part of. Thank you also to my colleagues at the University of South Australia for their academic insight and support, and willingness to trust in the merit of researching with metal youth.

Cheers, of course, to my family and friends, and my own metal kin along the way.

And don’t forget the dog. He has one job. Make everything okay. He excels at his work.


Chapter 1 Introduction 1
Part 1: Becoming Metal
Chapter 2 ‘Metal is My Drug’: The Comforts and Pleasures of Listening to Metal 31
Chapter 3 ‘It’s True, Metal gives You Power when You’rePowerless’: Embodying Metal Identities for Social Protection 49
Chapter 4 ‘That Sense of Metal Community is Great’: Narrative Constructions of Acceptance and Belonging 71
Part 2: Being Metal
Chapter 5 ‘No Shit I Wanna be a Rock Star, but for RealYou Need a Plan B’: Heavy Metal Dreams Reprised 99
Chapter 6 ‘Dude, You’re Doing it, You’re Living the Dream’: From Dreams to Reality, What Does it Take? 119
Chapter 7 ‘Mum Hates it, She Thinks all Metal Dudes areEvil’: Practical Wisdom for Parents and Others 143
Chapter 8 ‘It Sucks that People Get the Wrong Idea aboutMetal’: Concluding Remarks 165
References 173
Index 179