4 Reasons Why Music Careers Are Getting Trounced By Tech

Bobby Owsinski:

It used to be that if our best and brightest had any affinity for music at all, they would go to great ends to enter the business, with a long-term vision in mind. Not so today, as music careers are getting trounced by the tech industry when it comes to job choice and availability, and there’s no end to this movement in sight.

Where music was once seen by many as one of the highest callings possible, that perception seemed to die with the 90’s even as the music business hit its peak. It’s been all downhill since as the brain drain and lack of incoming talent has only helped to accelerate the industry’s fall to where it is today at about half its all-time high revenue.

Reading this I feel like I was caught in the middle of a transition. I was too late on the music as a career option, but too early to get in on the App gold rush (which has already peaked).

Fractions of a Penny

Young people don’t like banks.

…this digital-savvy cohort is looking to the tech sector to provide banking solutions. Half of respondents said they were counting on startups to overhaul how banks work, and three-quarters said they would be more excited in financial services provided by Google, Amazon, Apple, PayPal, or Square than from their own banks.

You know how fragmented messaging services are because you need all the people in your life on one service? Wait until that happens in banking.”

Technology Won’t Save Classical Music

I’ve been saving this link in Omnifocus for months trying to figure out why this idea of technology “saving” classical music bothers me so much.

So much industry tries to get off the ground by claiming that it’s about education and “the kids.” When I was in 6th grade there was a “Cable In the Classroom” campaign which claimed to bring something like “a new world of learning!” to elementary classrooms, but really it was a weekly break for teachers to catch up on whatever else they needed to do while kids watched a video.

I think it’s a similar thing with iPads and classical music. Advocates like this can fool themselves into believing that the real problem with classical music is that it needs more iPads – that there’s an app for that.

Did anyone else HATE their english classes in high school? Why? I rarely liked the books we read. They were oftentimes HUNDREDS of years old. English classes may be the place where we teach kids to HATE reading. They jokingly write on their Facebook profiles things like “Reading? HAHA!” under the “favorite books” section. Is it really a surprise that many students never pick up a book again after high school? We tried to shove “The Hobbit” down their throats in 7th grade (Yes – I HATED the Hobbit).

An eighth grader reading “Great Expectations” is probably going to be bored out of their mind whether they read it on paper or on a Kindle. I’ve read of classical music programs where they claim to lift the stuffiness of the performance by allowing their audiences to come and go as they please – as if the puny brains of today’s youth just can’t handle a symphony.

When you were in second grade, what COULD you handle? How long could you sit still? When is the right time to introduce them to classical music? Why even call it that?

Maybe it just isn’t the right time for these kids yet. That’s going to change if you let someone go to the bathroom between movements and play Angry Birds?

In the same way some kids learn to love to read by picking up the right book, some kids learn to love classical music by finding the right music – for them. It’s not really a classical music problem. It’s not a technology problem. It’s not “these kids” today. It’s a content-to-kid problem.

Then we will FORCE them to be engineers!

Turning to the issue of women’s underrepresentation in STEM fields, Sommers quotes an article bemoaning the fact that, “In China, 40 percent of engineers are women, and in the former USSR, women accounted for 58 percent of the engineering workforce”—whereas in the West, as we know, female engineers are fewer and further between. Should we conclude from this that Western women are more oppressed than women in China or the former Soviet Union? Clearly not. As Sommers notes, the relatively small number of female engineers in the West doesn’t stem from Western oppression; it stems from the exact opposite: Western freedom.

“Can Silicon Valley Embrace Politics?”

A lengthy article about tech companies and their new struggles with…lobbying, I suppose.

Also this:

“San Francisco is a place where we can go downstairs and get in an Uber and go to dinner at a place that I got a restaurant reservation for halfway there,” Morin said. “And, if not, we could go to my place, and on the way there I could order takeout food from my favorite restaurant on Postmates, and a bike messenger will go and pick it up for me. We’ll watch it happen on the phone. These things are crazy ideas.”

It suddenly occurred to me that the hottest tech start-ups are solving all the problems of being twenty years old, with cash on hand, because that’s who thinks them up.

Etiquette Redefined in the Digital Age

Via @nostrich, who put it so eloquently.