Beverly Keel

Chairperson

Beverly Keel
615-898-5150
Room 231B, John Bragg Media and Entertainment Building (BRAGG)
MTSU Box 21, Murfreesboro, TN 37132
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Degree Information

  • M.S., Columbia University, NY (1989)
  • B.S., Middle Tennessee State University (1988)

Areas of Expertise

Publicity in the Recording Industry

Biography

Beverly Keel is chair of MTSU’s Department of Recording Industry, where she has been a professor since 1995.

She is also an award-winning music journalist journalist and pop culture commentator who has covered the music industry for more than 25 years. She writes for Parade magazine and The Tennessean and has served as a music industry management/publicity consultant for artists including Jamey Johnson, Lionel Richie, Scotty McCreery and others.  ...

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Beverly Keel is chair of MTSU’s Department of Recording Industry, where she has been a professor since 1995.

She is also an award-winning music journalist journalist and pop culture commentator who has covered the music industry for more than 25 years. She writes for Parade magazine and The Tennessean and has served as a music industry management/publicity consultant for artists including Jamey Johnson, Lionel Richie, Scotty McCreery and others.  

In 2014, she joined forces with Tracy Gershon and Leslie Fram to create Change the Conversation, a coalition designed to help fight gender inequality in country music.  

 During her tenure at MTSU, she also served as director of the John Seigenthaler Chair of Excellence in First Amendment Studies. She is the past president of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music-US.  

In 2010, she took a leave of absence from MTSU to serve as senior vice president of Media and Artist Relations for Universal Music Group Nashville. She developed and implemented extensive media campaigns for UMG Nashville’s chart-topping roster of artists, including Lionel Richie, Scotty McCreery, Vince Gill, Sugarland, Jamey Johnson, Josh Turner, Lee Ann Womack, George Strait, Kip Moore, and many more.

She spent a decade as the Nashville correspondent for People magazine and served as the celebrity columnist at The Tennessean newspaper for two years, during which time she won the Charlie Lamb Award for Excellence in Country Music Journalism.

She was an editor of American Profile magazine, for which she wrote cover stories on President Carter, Billy Graham, Laura Bush, Andy Griffith, John Grisham, Joe Namath and many more, and also served as editor of CMT Life.   Her work has appeared in Parade, InStyle, New York, Oxford American, Weekly Standard, Rolling Stone, USA Today, Country Music, New Country, Country Music Today and Music Row magazines.

A former music industry columnist for the Nashville Scene and Nashville Banner newspapers, her journalism has received awards from the Associated Press and the Association of American Newsweeklies.

Keel has served as a commentator on country music personalities and events and has been featured on ABC’s Six Degrees of Martina McBride, CBS’ 48 Hours Mystery, as well as numerous shows on VH-1, Bravo, CMT, GAC and other networks. She has been quoted as a music expert in publications such as the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune and Reader’s Digest.

A graduate of Leadership Music, Leadership Nashville and Leadership Middle Tennessee, she currently serves as board member of the Recording Academy, Music Makes Us and The Women’s Fund. She is a past member of the Nashville Mayor’s Music Council and is a past board member of TPAC. She is an editorial board member of the Journal of Popular Music Studies and a member of the International Women’s Forum.  

In 2015, she was inducted into the Metro Nashville Public Schools Hall of Fame and in 2016 was named an honoree of the YWCA Academy for Women of Achievement. She has been given the Nashville Business Journal’s Women in Music City award for the past three years A Nashville native, she earned her bachelor’s degree from Middle Tennessee State University and her master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.    

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