The digitalisation of music.
Over the past ten years, social networking sites have become a staple part of our online experience and of course a major step forward in the promotion of music. They have allowed people to communicate with each other, wherever in the world they may be. Ever since the introduction of social networking users have been able to interact with one another to discuss things like their favourite singers, bands, songs and concert experiences. It brings music lovers together.
Who uses social networking?
Artists are able to have their music streamed on multiple sites and have their videos uploaded onto sites like YouTube, etc. Music critics are also using this platform of social networking to upload their reviews, giving them and their work more publicity. But it’s not just music critics who are using this, it’s also the public who have been given an opportunity to have their voices heard.
Smartphones have become more or less ubiquitous in society today with over 6.5 billion people in the world using one, which apparently is more than the amount of people who own a toothbrush. This has enabled us to be updated constantly with news about our favourite musicians and bands. We never have to miss anything. Ever.
Discovering new artists.
Sites like iTunes and SoundCloud have made it far more possible for independent record labels and artists to show their music to a wider audience, they can promote their music and compete with the big names. This was something that they couldn’t do without the help of the internet. For independent artists getting their music heard is so much easier than it would have been 14 years ago when it wasn’t around. With the help of social media, discovering new, young and aspiring musicians has made it even easier for A&R, all they have to do now is click on to YouTube. Wannabe musicians only have the simple task of recording their songs and uploading them to SoundCloud, etc. and if they’re good enough they might just get the right amount of recognition to get discovered.
A record producer’s opinion.
When Steve Albini, the producer – or ‘record engineer ‘ as he prefers – behind over 1500 records gave the keynote address at Melbourne’s Face at Music conference in 2014 he said that, “Fans can find the music they like and develop direct relationships with the bands.” and “The internet has facilitated the most direct and efficient, compact relationship ever between band and audience.” I feel like these statements are very important to the music industry because ever since the beginning of online streaming, some members of the industry have been up in arms, as they have a belief that this is signifying the death of music as it is today. However, with someone who is so credible in the industry saying this, I personally believe that this is a great platform for music, it’s less about the death of music but the birth of a whole new era of music. All in all, I truly believe that the internet has helped the music industry to grow into a new era and whether or not people agree with the the direction it’s heading in, it’s difficult to deny that it has helped it out of a decline.
– Tom Petty