When you look back at the past 15 years and the growth of technology, you can see how it has affected the music world. Crediting Napster, iPods, Youtube, and Spotify; the landscape of music has been changed forever. There are so many different venues to consume as well as distribute music. However, beyond the obvious changes to the industry that we all know so well, I have noticed something else you can credit to the technology boom. With the birth of online music sharing, we also have the birth of the Music Snob.
Now don’t get me wrong, people have been bashing on different music for way longer than the internet has been around, but let’s define a music snob for a moment. Google music snob and you get lists of criteria that might indicate that you are one. Things like: hating on what’s on the radio, being anti pop music, complaining that songs are overplayed, and stating that you liked a band before they “got big.” Truthfully I think we all have a little music snob in us. People enjoy finding bands that no one knows about. They are possessive of their music. They want to show it to their friends and take credit for discovering it. If this is the criteria for being a music snob then it must have been impossible to partake in this growing trend prior to the burst of the internet. Let me explain.
With all these outlets of music and how easy it is for someone to put their stuff out there, the consumer has a large amount of music available for discovery. It becomes easier to avoid and dislike what is considered pop. Before all these channels the radio was really all anyone had. And there was a lot less stations to listen to as well. You were basically captive to what was popular. I quote my parents when they say, “We just listened to what was being played.” Not as common to be a music snob pre-internet.
[/ezcol_1third] [ezcol_2third_end]I think about the Beatles. The Beatles were basically the first Boy-Band, yet everyone listened to them. Now I know you’re going to say the Beatles aren’t like today's Boy-Band because they were incredible musicians and are considered maybe the greatest band of all time. But it wasn’t till a couple albums in that the Beatles started pushing themselves and creating the music that was considered revolutionary. When they first came on to the scene they were just four good looking guys doing 50’s pop music. While good, it was very generic. Had there been the same outlets of music and the large amounts of music snobs that there are today, maybe people would have looked elsewhere and given up on the Beatles before they had a chance to become, THE BEATLES. Thank god we weren’t living in the era of the music snob back then, but what does that mean for the people making music now?[/ezcol_2third_end]
As more and more music becomes available, I expect more and more people to turn toward this culture of the music snob. A person is able to find the specific music that is their cup of tea and avoid what isn’t. Maybe it’s not a bad thing. This philosophy definitely gives bands an opportunity to be heard. I myself do extensive online searching for bands and love finding ones that have never been heard. It’s an ownership mentality and I take pride in showing my new finding to my friends. Yet, I have a feeling it limits the lifespan of bands and doesn’t allow groups to be as innovative as their predecessors. It will be years before we will know for sure if this theory is true or not. All we do know is that with the birth of the internet, came the birth of the music snob.