How Digital Changed The Music Industry

Music and the Digital World have grown ever closer within the past 10 years as it became possible to listen to music and download it online. As years have gone by, music its self has changed as well as the way we access it, it has proven to become a lot easier to grab hold of the music you enjoy, whereas this has along lasting affect on the industry its self. 

The first music production was to promote religion, dating way back to the year 325, where music was simply vocal chords harmonising, and would be performed to an audience or someone of a high status. As time goes by, in the 1630's the first women performed a song, and later on in 1639, the first opera performed. People carried on experimenting with music and in 1919 Jazz was introduced to Chicago, adding a new buzz to the music industry. Descending from Jazz, a more subtle version evolved, Blues, in 1923. Before the 90's made an appearance, Reggae, Disco and Rap all took the stage, proving music could be expressed in many forms, and a whole diversity of artists became involved within the production of sound. In 1981, MTV formed and  appeared on the air running around the clock music videos, debuting with “Video Killed the Radio Star.” Now in the 21'st century, particularly 2013, CD sales have decreased by 14.5%, as music becomes dangerously accessible online.

As years go by, technology evolves, and therefore the way we can listen to and access our music has significantly changed. Throwing it way back to 1877, the first instrument made to listen to music was the Phonograph. It was a speaker that had very bad quality, and the recording of the song only lasted one play. 20 years later, the Graphophone took the stage, and was made of wax cylinders, that allowed the audio to be played many times. Progressing on, the Gramophone was created, which was the first device to stop recording on cylinders and instead used the flat disks. Due to no electricity being available at the time, the speaker had to be powered manually, by winding it up on the side.  Mid 20th century, records were created, and were initially made of glass, and sound was created by the needle on a player scratching the music marks made on the disk. Eventually, records were changed from being made by glass to plastic, and this proved to be easier for mass production. In 1970, Cassettes were produced, which could be used to listen and record your own music.

They consisted of magnetic tape, and was double sided, so you can flip it over tho play the pother side. By the end of the 1970's, the Walkman was produced by SONY, and introduced a personal way to listen to music, also portable. Around the same time, CD's were created, along with CD players which became immensely popular as you were given the ability to skip a song, rewind, pause etc. As the 21'st century began, digital took over music, as iPod's were created in 2001, which allowed people to store more than 100 songs at once, and later in 2007 the iPod Touch became a revolutionary way to access music, as WiFi allowed users to download and access iTunes on the go, as well as access YouTube and other audio sharing websites. 

The evolution within the industry has help to create a huge platform for ,music to be accessible for everyone. However as it becomes increasingly easy to download music without paying, or listen on devices, it is crucially effecting the industry. According to Visually, there are 400+ digital music services worldwide, which allow users to access any audio for free, and illegally. In 2008 alone, 95% of music downloads were pirated, and from 2004-2009, 30 billion songs were downloaded online, illegally. This may seem like an advantage as music is accessible so easily and for no cost, however the producers are effected, and lose out as there music is no longer payed for. Not only is this a financial defect, but it also causes artists to feel discouraged, as even though people listen to their music, they are not wholly supporting the career of the producer.