Job title: Lecturer in Popular Music & Jazz Studies


Office address: Alison House, Room 3.11

Research outputs: Dr Marian Jago on Edinburgh Research Explorer

Marian obtained her BA from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, and her MA (Musicology) and PhD (Ethnomusicology) both from York University in Toronto, Canada with Prof. Rob Bowman. Her work involved archival research and ethnographic enquiry into the pedagogical practices of Lee Konitz with whom she studied for several years; as well as the development of the Canadian jazz scene, in particular the rather unique place of co-operative jazz clubs in less central regions of that country. 

Marian maintains an interest in jazz improvisation and pedagogy in general, and on the practices of Lee Konitz and Lennie Tristano in particular, and has published on these areas in The Journal of Jazz StudiesJazz Research Journal, and elsewhere. Her work on Canadian jazz co-operatives has been published by the University of British Columbia Press (Live at the Cellar, 2018). 

In addition to her continuing work in jazz studies, Marian lectures in Popular Music, placing particular emphasis on the ways in which race and gender are operative within popular music performance practice and reception. She has a particular affinity for mid-20thcentury American Blues and Soul, and with the ways in which hip-hop has been adopted a form of musical resistance by indigenous communities in Canada, New Zealand, and elsewhere. In both Marian’s teaching and research there is an emphasis on music as culture, music as/and technology, and the various intersections between music and other facets of popular culture (esp. film, television, design). 

Marian is editor of the journal Jazz Perspectives, sits on the board of directors for the Scottish Jazz Archive, and convenes the Jazz and Popular Music Study Group which meets Wednesdays, in the Reid School of Music.  

Marian is the course organizer and primary lecturer for the undergraduate courses Topics in Popular Music and Festivals, and for the postgraduate course Making Sense of Popular Music.

She also contributes at times to Improvisation as Social Process and to various performance courses in addition to supervising individual UG projects and PG students.


  • Creative Music Practice - PhD
  • Music - BMus (Hons)
  • Music - MA
  • Music - PhD/MSc by Research
  • Musicology - MMus

Research Interests:

The music and pedagogical practices of Lennie Tristano and Lee Konitz

Jazz improvisation (performance practice, pedagogy)

Jazz as culture

Scene studies

Jazz and popular culture

Popular Music of the 20th Century (esp. blues, country, soul, hip hop)


Current PhD students

PhD Supervision Topics

Accepting applications.

  • Jazz Studies
  • Popular Music 

Particularly topics related to African American popular musics of the 20th century; scene studies; aesthetics; intersections between popular music and popular culture (film, television, visual media); popular music and place/space.

  • Ethnography
  • Ethnomusicology