From Beatlemania in the early 1960s to the Directioners and Beyhive of today, female music fans have long driven the objects of their affection to the dizzying heights of life-changing fame. But marginalized fan groups are never given appropriate credit. Frequently derided, their worlds and communities are self-contained and rarely investigated by cultural historians and commentators. Yet without these people, in the past, records would have gathered dust on shelves, unsold and forgotten. Now, concerts wouldn’t sell out and revenue streams from merchandising would disappear, changing the face of the music industry as we know it. In Fangirls: Scenes From Modern Music Culture, journalist Hannah Ewens is on a mission to give these individuals their rightful due. A dedicated music lover herself, she has spoken to hundreds of fans from the UK to Japan to trace their path through recent pop and rock history. She’s found the untold stories behind important events and uncovered the ups, the downs and the lengths fans go to, celebrating the camaraderie and lifelines their fandoms can provide.
By Hannah Ewens