Staff profile

Jon Burton

Senior Lecturer in BSc (Hons) Sound, Light and Live Event Engineering

Jon Burton in a music room standing close to a bass guitar


Engineering, Entertainment Engineering


College of Science and Engineering


School of Engineering


Markeaton Street, Derby Campus



Before joining the University in 2019, I had a long career in the music industry, working as a sound engineer, primarily in live concert touring. I have worked with many acts from Bryan Ferry to Radiohead, Biffy Clyro to The Prodigy. I have worked most recently as a Front of House engineer but for many years as a monitor engineer. A chance invite to talk at an industry event ignited an interest in teaching and over the last twenty years, I have been giving guest lectures and masterclasses around the world.

In 2014, I decided to concentrate on education and enrolled at the University of York where I graduated with an MSc in Music Tech. My passion remains sound and I am looking to pass on my many years of experience to the students at Derby.

Teaching responsibilities

I teach on the BSc (Hons) in Sound, Light and Live Event Technology as well as the MSc in Audio Engineering.

Professional interests

I am still involved with music and although I have stopped working as a touring sound engineer, I still maintain an active interest. I have recently worked with Biffy Clyro and The Prodigy on their festival shows (2022-23). Through my connections with industry, I am building bridges between education and the various professions that make up my field of interest.

Research interests

I have a Research Master's in Music Technology and will be continuing my work on acoustics and psychoacoustics. I am continuing my research into audience perception and ways that we can improve the overall experience at concerts, particularly at larger events such as festivals and arena shows through a Ph.D.

Membership of professional bodies

I am a member of the Audio Engineering Society, the Institute of Sound and Communication Engineers and a Fellow of the HE Academy. In 2017, I was made a companion of the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts.


Recent conferences

Experience in industry

I worked as a sound engineer for almost 35 years and was the front-of-house engineer for the dance act The Prodigy from 2004 – to 2019. I have worked as the sound engineer for Gabrielle, Bring Me The Horizon and Biffy Clyro and worked with many other artists. I have worked on TV, and radio, on such programmes as Top of The Pops, Later With Jools, The Tonight Show (US), etc. I have extensive studio experience and co-own a five-studio recording complex in Sheffield, The Laundry Rooms. I also write regularly for the international magazine "Sound on Sound".

International experience

I have toured the world extensively as a live sound engineer, working widely in Europe, North and South America, Russia, Asia and Australasia. I have worked in South Africa, Morocco, and the Middle East. As an educator, I have devised and taught courses in sound engineering most recently in Serbia and Armenia. I have worked in over 60 countries.

Additional interests and activities

I have a keen interest in music of all types and try and keep up to date with all the most recent technological advances. I am also interested in art and cinema.

In the media

Front of House sound for "The Prodigy" with Jon Burton, d&b audiotechnik, Midas Consoles

How to Soundcheck' presented by Jon Burton, at PLASA Focus: Leeds 2013

Stepping Up Your Sound Engineering Career

Recent publications

Burton, J. (2022) ‘Using Cognitive Psychology And Neuroscience To Better Inform Sound System Design At Large Musical Events’, in Proceedings of the Institute of Acoustics. Reproduced Sound, Bristol: Institute of Acoustics (3).

Kok, M. et al. (2022) ‘The influence of audience participatory noise on sound levels at live events.’, in. 51st International Congress and Exposition on Noise Control Engineering, Glasgow.

Hill, A.J. et al. (2022) ‘Sound Level Monitoring at Live Events, Part 3--Improved Tools and Procedures’, Journal of the Audio Engineering Society, 70(1/2), pp. 73–82. Available at: (Accessed: 24 January 2022).

Mulder, J. et al. (2022) ‘Sound Level Monitoring at Live Events, Part 2---Regulations, Practices, and Preferences’, Journal of the Audio Engineering Society, 70(1/2), pp. 62–72. Available at: (Accessed: 24 January 2022).

Mulder, J. et al. (2021) ‘Education and Certification in Sound Pressure Level Measurement, Monitoring and Management at Entertainment Events’, in. Audio Engineering Society Conference: 2021 AES International Audio Education Conference, Audio Engineering Society. Available at: (Accessed: 2 April 2022).

Hill, A.J. et al. (2021) ‘Sound Level Monitoring at Live Events, Part 1--Live Dynamic Range’, Journal of the Audio Engineering Society, 69(11), pp. 782–792. Available at: (Accessed: 2 April 2022).


An indoor concert from within the crowd with spotlights.

Jon Burton, Lecturer in Sound, Light and Live Event Technology at the University of Derby, looks back on how audio and lighting has developed over the years and the technological advancements that have helped to drive change in this area.

Artists worked with

I have worked for a large number of artists as a sound engineer either monitors or FOH. This list is artists for whom I have worked for directly on multiple occasions or for significant events.

  • Amazulu
  • Natacha Atlas
  • Babybird
  • Bat For Lashes
  • Bars & Melody
  • Biffy Clyro
  • Big Audio Dynamite
  • Bjork
  • Blue
  • Bombay Bicycle Club
  • The Boo Radleys
  • Booka Shade
  • Bring Me The Horizon
  • The Candyskins
  • Ceca
  • Chase & Status
  • Charlie Brown
  • Cocteau Twins
  • Zdravko Colic
  • Comsat Angels
  • Cornershop
  • Count Basie Orchestra
  • Counting Crows
  • The Cranberries
  • The Damned
  • Dandy Warhols
  • Deacon Blue
  • DJ Fresh
  • East 17
  • Echobelly
  • Elastica
  • Bryan Ferry
  • Frazier Chorus
  • Gabrielle
  • Gay Dad
  • Gene
  • Beth Gibbons (Portishead)
  • Gigolo Aunts
  • Gilberto Gil
  • Guy Called Gerald
  • Lionel Hampton
  • Richard Hawley
  • Heaven 17
  • Holly & The Italians
  • Icicle Works
  • James
  • The Jennifers
  • Katrina and the Waves
  • BB King
  • Thomas Lang
  • Kristian Leontiou
  • Lemon Jelly
  • Lisa Stansfield
  • The Levellers
  • The Lighthouse Family
  • Lulu
  • Curtis Mayfield
  • Mika
  • Morcheeba
  • James Morrison
  • N’Dea Davenport
  • Pendulum
  • Pet Shop Boys
  • Play Dead
  • Prefab Sprout
  • The Prodigy
  • Pulp
  • Finlay Quaye
  • Radiohead
  • The Railway Children
  • Rakila
  • Reverend & the Makers
  • Ride
  • Ruby Turner
  • Shake Appeal
  • Skye
  • Sleeper
  • Slowdive
  • Sneaker Pimps
  • Squarepusher
  • Stereo MC's
  • Stereophonics
  • Suede
  • Teenage Fanclub
  • Richard Thompson
  • Tricky
  • The Twang
  • The Verve
  • Warm Jets
  • Yes No people
  • The Woodentops
  • Zerra 1