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Affect of Technology in Music Industry

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The music industry has come a long way since those dreadful days of the mono recordings. Back then, artists, producers, and engineers didn't have as much of a choice of what equipment that would use to get their recordings done. With the advancement in technology and new innovations constantly being created in the music industry, the opportunities are endless. If you look up the definition of technology you will see the words industry and commerce, which to me just means growth and development. Technology has and will continue to influence growth and development in the music industry.

With the growth of technology, the technical end of producing and engineering has become somewhat a quicker task. For example, the introduction of system real time messages synchronized drum machines, sequences and other rhythmic devices. System real time messages are dropped into the data stream as required, and have priority over other messages in order to mainstream synchronization at all times. In other advances in technology has allowed these devices to operate with timing clocks so everything does not have to be done completely be hand anymore.1 As music production and recording systems become more complex and sophisticated, the need for intuitive, easy to use controls over then became essential if they are to be used effectively.

Technology has made music systems become more and more sophisticated, so the tasks involved in the successful control of these systems has become increasingly complex. Technology has also brought about a new language to go with the systems we use in the industry today. So even if you have knowledge in some of the systems but can not comprehend the language, you're only half way there. Technology has not only brought about new systems on which we make music but a whole language to go with it. There is enough terminology that goes with the applications to fill a small dictionary. In general, a common language is needed if all aspects of audio production are to be understood at all. These innovations are like the difference between telling time with a digital and analog watch.4

When speaking about technology and its influence on the music industry, there is more than just the artistry aspect of it. There's the business aspect which influences how you can sell the music or the ways people can obtain the music. For example, technology has made it possible to sell music over the internet. Who would have ever thought that a consumer could purchase their favorite single right from the comfort of their own home? With new innovations like iTunes and napster, you can download songs from any computer that has internet access. Not to mention

The ring tone trends that are going on. Platinum artist are also selling 1,000,000 ring tones off just one song in some situations.

Today's music industry is powered by sophisticated technology. Not only do we have the radio stations, but now we also have satellite radio. It's called XM radio. XM radio has an iPod like recording functionality but it is pretty limited. Yes it can store up to 50 hours of music, but the service is subscription based. If you end your subscription, your music disappears. These songs are stored in a proprietary format, so there is no easy way to copy them to other devices. Still the music industry is suing XM radio because it has a record feature. 5

Technology is changing the way people acquire there favorite songs. In other words CD sells are down these days, but that doesn't mean people aren't still buying the music. Technology has made it possible to download your music. At first, downloads were available for free and some sites still are. Still in all, sales for digital downloads are expected to expand significantly over the next years. They are expected to expand from 22 million in 2001 to 1.6 billion in 2006. Most online music sales will come from subscription services which are expected to increase from 56 million in 2001 to 2.3 billion in 2006. (New media music, 2001)6

As technology keeps developing the times are changing. Everyone use to go buy there favorite CD and play it in their walkman. Now everyone downloads there favorite songs onto their MP3 player and play what may seem like endless hours of the songs of their choice. MP3 technology has played a key role in radically changing the music industry and has become somewhat the standard amongst online fans. Global music sales are currently around 37 billion in the US. However, there are indications that physical music sales- mainly compact discs, cassettes and vinyl have reached a state of saturation.6 That's not to say the market is saturated because by all means its not. Most music is currently being distributed by means of compact discs. For example, the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (1999) reported that 91 percent of all revenues received by music retailers derive from sales of CD's.6 One thing that is attracting consumers to download is the fact that the quality of the songs does not deteriorate during the download process. The development of digital music has changed the music industry to the point that downloading has made its way to the center of the music industry.

New innovations like the MP3 have put music in the reach of those with computers. The MP3 allows the transfer of close to CD quality sound music files over the internet. MP3 was developed by the Motions Pictures Expert Group(MPEG) of the International Standards Organization (ISO). The MP3 wasn't even developed even developed for musical purposes. It was actually developed for the development of the interactive television industry.6 But regardless of why the MP3 was created, the technology it has shown has been a major influence on how and why the music industry is changing. We already know there has been a great change over the last few years, the question is do these changes make for a better or worse music industry. MP3 has somehow become the standard of obtaining music among internet surfing fans.5 I personally think these new



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