“Music Before Was Good, Not Like Nowadays”: You’ve probably heard more than one purist vehemently claim that today’s music is trash and that “there are no artists like before.” While this argument lacks any sense, the truth is that contemporary music is very different from the past, and social media plays a significant role in this transformation.
“If you take a stroll through Spotify or any other platform, you’ll see the proliferation of a new type of song that is much more sensationalist. Let’s not even talk about the lyrics, which in some cases can be extremely basic. To write a viral song, all you need to do is follow the current trend and add a catchy hook.
The truth is that this method is not the worst thing in the world, and it has given us some incredibly fun hits, it must be said. However, it’s a phenomenon that is impossible to ignore, especially if you spend a lot of time on social media. The impact that TikTok, Twitter, Instagram, and similar platforms have had on popular culture is undeniable, and of course, this has also affected music.
For years, artists no longer need the backing of major record labels to achieve success. A great example of this is Lil Nas X‘s early career. His song “Old Town Road” stayed at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 for over 16 weeks. Another very similar case is Doja Cat, the creator of viral hits like “Say So” and “Mooo!”
The emergence of figures like Lil Nas X and Doja Cat set new precedents within the music industry. This trend can be seen in many current artists and how they strive to become the next TikTok viral sensation. Even record labels are not exempt from this, as they often ask their artists to write songs specifically designed to perform well on social media platforms.
Contrary to what you might think, not even the biggest and most recognized artists are exempt from this phenomenon. Halsey, for example, expressed on social media that her record label wouldn’t allow her to release a new song until she had her own viral moment on TikTok.
However, record labels were not the only ones to realize the potential of virality. TikTok itself launched SoundOn in March 2022, which allows artists to upload their own songs to TikTok and even distribute them across various streaming platforms. What’s more, ByteDance does not charge any commissions or additional fees.
Publishing music and getting heard has never been easier. However, this has also led to an oversaturated market and has brought about a shift in our music consumption habits. Platforms like Spotify, SoundCloud, and Apple Music have also contributed to making music more accessible and easy to share with our friends. What do you think about this change?
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