The Great British Music Map

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An encyclopaedic music map of Great Britain

You’ve probably never associated maps with music before, but one of our recent printing projects does exactly that. Printed by Dennis Maps in full colour on two sides, The Great British Music Map celebrates Britain’s world class music scene, and is part of a growing series published by Marvellous Maps with Great British themes.

You may remember that we’ve already featured The Great British Adventure Map here on the blog.

What’s on The Great British Music Map

And what a lot there is to ‘record’ about the music of Britain, which tops charts around the world! Apparently one in every eight singles and albums sold worldwide is by a British artist, which is a quite astonishing feat for such a small country.

Before diving into the detail, though, first check the key in the bottom right hand corner for the coloured symbols.

A pink noteshows a place that’s mentioned in a song title, a double note one that features in a lyric.

And there’s so much more – other symbols denote a place name in an album title, in the name of an artist or band, the location for a music video or record cover, or a place that inspired a song.

Displayed on the map are over 2000 festivals, live music venues and lots more. Some areas are so loaded with musical activity that they have their own miniature maps – Liverpool, it goes without saying, Manchester, Edinburgh (the home of Bay City Rollermania, no less), and areas of London like Soho and Brixton, birthplace of David Bowie and home to the real Electric Avenue.

But also smaller places have many musical connections. Have you ever thought of the Norfolk Broads and coast as an inspiration for song writers? You’ve probably unknowingly seen its beaches in a Madness video and on a Stranglers’ album cover.

There’s plenty of music trivia here too – a ‘glorious tale or random nugget’, a recording studio or a memorial to a deceased musician. You can find out where your favourite musicians come from, the location of noted record shops, and much more besides.

Road Trips

And if you fancy a music-based road trip around Britain to tour the haunts of your favourite bands and songwriters, the reverse side of the map provides a route around Britain’s Top 50 music locations. There’s even a suggested playlist to keep you humming en route.

To make sure you don’t miss any of the scenery along the way, the map includes handy references to the Ordnance Survey maps for each area, so you can get out of the car and absorb the atmosphere.

What would the theme of your road trip be?

You could do worse than try the suggested Tour of Britain’s Most Musical-Sounding Place Names, that takes in Clubworthy, Dancing Ledge, Bass Rock and Craig David (honestly).

Musical quotes

Don’t overlook the small print around the edge of both sides of the map. It features musical quotes like this gem from John Peel at the 1988 Reading Festival –

“If you don’t stop throwing bottles, I’ll play Bee Gees records.”

The fighting, allegedly, stopped instantly!

How to buy The Great British Music Map

You can buy it as a folded map to accompany your musical progress around Britain, or framed as a conversation piece for your living room or music room.

Use the map to plan your very own musical adventure, or just to astonish your friends with your new, encyclopaedic music knowledge down at the pub quiz!