Music doesn’t stand still. It simply can’t. Whether it’s because of changes in culture, evolutions in technology, or simply a transformation in taste, the march of time has always had a massive influence on what we want to listen to.
Madonna is a good example of how musicians that know this and adapt to these changes can stay relevant over whatever current trend is fashionable at any given moment. She seems to have an uncanny ability to stay just ahead of the shift of trends, which is why we’re still talking about her almost 40 years since she broke onto the scene.
Knowledge Is Power
These days, musicians are better versed when it comes to the more mundane business side of the industry than they’ve ever been. Even total newcomers like J. S. Ondara now realise how important it is to educate themselves about business practices like retaining copyright to their work and understanding their rights in terms of negotiating royalty splits.
And, thanks to technology now making it possible to allow up-and-coming artists to self-release more easily than ever before, major labels don’t hold all the power anymore. Independent companies are proving this by increasing their market share by over 10% annually.
Wave Goodbye to Genres
Genre-fusing is nothing new and even a cursory look at Anti-Folk from Florence and the Machine and Antsy Pants, Folktronica like Portishead, Jazz Rap like Digable Planets, Stoner Rock by Queens of the Stone Age, and will confirm this. But we saw this concept taken to a whole new level last year when Billy Ray Cyrus teamed up with the then-unknown Lil Nas X to release Old Town Road. The result? One of 2019’s standout hits, with the Rap/Country fusion peaking on the Billboard for 19 consecutive weeks and setting a new record.
In much the same way that online Bingo Canada suffered not in the slightest in its evolution onto the new platforms of desktops, smartphones, and tablets, music is making the most of the ways the world is changing!
And this was just the start. Streaming services like Amazon Music Unlimited, Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, and YouTube Music are blurring the division between genres more and more. Music’s getting cheaper to buy and easier to access, so people don’t have to limit themselves as harshly as they have been up until now. This, in turn, breaks walls down between the tribes that have evolved and we’re getting exposed to different styles and types of songs from younger ages and creating the perfect space for even more outrageous fusions!
Shorter Is Better
The most popular songs have gradually been getting shorter over the years and, just between 2018 and 2019, the average length of Top 40 tracks were 30 seconds shorter than they’d ever been before. We don’t know why this is yet, and it might well darkly hint to the younger generations’ shorter attention spans, but statistically speaking, shortening your track may see it surge in popularity.