Some call it a digital revolution, others a metaverse and some “business as usual” in another form. It doesn’t matter. The fact is that the new technologies have changed a good part of the customs and ways of doing things in our day to day. Music and songs have not been a special case, but have undergone a series of transformations that have profoundly affected their creation, recording, distribution and business.

Let’s see some important characteristics that the internet and the new forms of communication have adopted the songs and their life among us.

Before the internet

For thousands of years, humans wrote and sang songs to celebrate, to cry, to work, for so many things… And those songs needed someone to sing them, maybe even a musical instrument, and everything happened at the exact moment that Every interpretation was heard.

With the passage of time, an attempt was made to complement the oral tradition, repetition and memory with musical notation, symbols that represented in different ways that sound information, those letters and the relationship established between them in each composition.

Later, the printing press took musical notation to many more places than the ancient manuscripts, the knowledge and practice of music spread more and more.

In the 20th century, inventions such as the gramophone or the radio made the scope of songs and musical compositions of all kinds expand even more, with the addition that singers and musicians were no longer needed to listen to any work and with such Just a vinyl recording, for example, and a playback device you could feel immersed in varied musical experiences.

And the 21st century, as if all this were not enough, has caused a new radical change in some aspects directly related to songs and music, thanks to digital technologies.

Composition of songs

Composing songs or creating music of any kind, was traditionally an academic activity or, at least, an enlightened one, which required knowing some techniques and resources such as musical writing, for example, or an exercise in improvisation and ear training, based on traditions. oral transmission of popular pieces.

With the advent of computer programs and applications capable of, for example, synthesizing sounds and manipulating them, or sampling recordings in what is known as musical sampling, simply playing with files and digital processes could lead to new musical compositions, without the need for to have hardly any classical musical knowledge.

Song recording

The recording of songs is another of the processes that have undergone a complete transformation in a few decades.

The MIDI protocol, sound libraries, sampling , electronic sequencers or digital audio recording programs (DAWs) made it possible, among other things, to record songs and music in domestic environments with practically professional quality.

The so-called Home studios allowed you to record in your own home or in a modest room and the large and expensive recording studios of the 20th century have remained an option rather than a necessity when it comes to producing music and songs.

Keyboards and home studio

The result of these recordings were no longer single objects, called masters , but consisted of a simple audio file in one of the available formats (.mp3, .wav, .raw, .aiff, .ogg, etc…)

Musical diffusion

In addition, and as if that were not enough, the new digital technologies offered new possibilities to publicize that music and those songs.

Online radios, social networks, websites and other programs and applications made it possible that from that same room where a song had been recorded, it could be shown to everyone who had a computer, a mobile device and an internet connection.

The network of intermediaries that the music industry had put together during the 20th century, traditional radio, television and other media, were no longer absolutely necessary for a musical proposal to find its potential audience.

A profile on a social network or video platform, a song on a streaming service or digital radio, and a website of a group or artist could be enough to show the compositions, interpretation, and image of any singer or band to the world. whole.

As you can see, something never seen and completely impossible in previous centuries, which forced everything to change in the world of music.

Sale and consumption of songs

The last link in the music business related to recorded works, that is, the sale of copies, also suffered, and in what way, the consequences of the digitization of our lives.

Once again, the manufacture, distribution and sale of musical compositions and songs no longer required machines to manufacture vinyl, cassettes or compact discs, nor trucks and vans to transport the copies, nor physical stores to display and sell them.

Imagine what a beastly transformation, what an extreme change in business models in a couple of decades and the consequences it had for many companies and professionals in the sector.

We are still in that same room where a song was composed, recorded and released and, from that same place, suddenly, it was possible to put it up for sale in an online store, in a streaming service or on your own website.

Virtually without intermediaries, or at least not the traditional ones, with a simple audio file, although, logically, the accessibility and ease of copying these files made their value plummet and the sale of digital music really became in music promotion and hook to sell other things (concerts, merchandising , etc…).

Conclusions

In short, as has become clear, the Internet and the new communication tools and possibilities based on the digital have brought about a series of very important changes both in the creative part of the processes of writing, recording, disseminating and commercializing music and songs, as in our way of accessing them.

Whether we like it more or less, this is a reality that we can verify day by day, hour by hour and minute by minute.

Mobile devices, increasingly sophisticated programs and applications, new tools that are being invented and what will appear in the future that we cannot even imagine today, have continued that kind of trend that seems to lead music to a space every ever wider and more varied.

Nowadays, having a website where we can display our compositions, using email to communicate and make contacts of all kinds, or having a certain presence on social networks or digital media is practically an obligation if we want to exist and be discovered. by our future public, for example.

We cannot ignore the Internet and what it offers without paying the consequences, in the form of invisibility, for example, so calmly, let’s see what they can offer us and how we can make our voices heard in this new modern dimension.

Think about it, write songs and don’t isolate yourself. Simply find a place where you are comfortable and take action in this digital world in which we have had to live.