Robert Estrin - piano expert

Has Technology Ruined Art? Part III: Future Music

Discover what the future holds for music

In this third and last video about music and technology, Robert tells you what changes to expect in the near future in the world of music.

Released on September 21, 2016

  
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DISCLAIMER: The views and the opinions expressed in this video are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Virtual Sheet Music and its employees.

Video Transcription

Hi and welcome to virtualsheetmusic.com and livingpianos.com. I'm Robert Estrin with the third part of the series: Technology's Impact on Music.

Now we covered so much before you might be wondering, what's left to cover? Well, the future of music. We wonder, "What will music be like in the future?" Now we can only guess. But as we've discovered, technology affects art and music in each age in profound ways. So the advent of for example, louder instruments as instruments developed. And the size of ensembles developed, and concert halls got bigger, bigger audiences. And then mass communication with radio and recording, and today the internet. You can have audiences of millions. That was never possible before. Then you have collaborative music that couldn't have happened before because of multi-track recording. Artists could collaborate and they could be in different places at different times putting crafting together works, which could never have happened in the past.

Well, what does the future hold? Well before I go into my personal theory as to one substantial area where I believe music will evolve. I want to mention that no matter what evolves, people will always be playing Beethoven's sonatas, and Beatles songs, and tons of other great music from opera to Gregorian chant. You know, there's a rich history. And there will always be people remembering and immortalizing and bringing back to life the great music, literature, and art from the past. So just because we're adding to it, doesn't mean these things will go away. Not only that, by it's very nature art is a creative expression. And there's always going to be people who emerge seemingly out of nowhere with something to say that nobody's thought of to say before, in a way that nobody's thought of saying before.

But you've got to look at the trends in the last couple of decades, from the internet becoming so pervasive to social media where people are so connected constantly. So how can music be impacted by this? Well I envision the possibility of a platform of collaboration, not just with bands or groups of people working together. But it's already started in some...there isn't a standard so it's kind of under the radar. But just imagine a type of social media for musicians where people could contribute certain themes, certain arrangements, that other's could then expound upon. And things that catch on, it could almost be like branches of a tree. Somebody comes up with something great that's a bed for other people to work on. Now we've had a taste of this with remixes, which are really transcriptions in the literal sense of what they're doing. Taking a composition or a song from one artist, and making a whole new arrangement and a totally new type of expression with it. Well just imagine if this could be expanded by multiples of thousands, or even millions of people. Where popular beds of music and rhythm beats. People build, and it becomes a platform into itself. This is something that could create, in a sense, a superhuman type of music. Something that no one person could possibly conceive of. A refinement by the sheer numbers of people who like something. Now of course, that doesn't mean that everything that people like will be great as the testament for that is what's played on the radio. Some is great. Some no so much, right? Well, I don't supposed that will be fundamentally different. But what will be different, or has the potential for growth, is collaborative music in the sense that we can only get a brief idea about where this could possibly go.

Now of course, musical instruments will continue to evolve, and technologies of expression. Alternate types of controllers whether you just move your hands in the air to control pitch. You know? Kind of like the old technologies used in 1950s science fiction movies. But there's so much more that's possible with technology where it's possible to create sounds that traditional instruments can't create. Does that mean it's better? No. But in the head and the artistry of a brilliant musician, the possibilities, the palate of sounds are virtually endless. Anything is possible. And then add to that the fact that you could have countless people contributing to the music. And we have an exciting world of musical possibilities facing us in the future.

Love to hear other people's theories about what you feel will be the direction in the music. How much retro will continue through the ages? And I believe a lot of that will. Thanks so much for joining me. Remember, this is the third of a three-part series of Technology's Impact on Music. And Robert Estrin here at livingpianos.com and virtualsheetmusic.com.
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