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Haven’t you heard? Genre is dead. That’s right; the original music organization tool and sound identifier is no longer useful. There are plenty of tunes that are genre-bending hitting the top of the charts, yet the market is also abundant with specific subgenres to classify music. Genres like bedroom pop, hyperpop, folk, and sad girl indie are several subgenres that come to mind with subjective explanations and intricacies on their own. That said, the real question is will we have a genreless future for music? Or will these infinite, niche subgenres become the new norm?
When grappling at these existential music questions, the arts crew turned to the one and only, Shamir Bailey for the answer. The 26-year old lofi, indie-pop musician has had his share of experiences in the market to at least convey his outlook on the now stream dominating market that is the music industry.
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Together, Sam, Max, and Emily discussed with Shamir the implications of streaming as well as the infamous streaming recommendation algorithms that occupy this new age of music listening. He then gave us his outlook on how he classifies his own work and why he chose to “genre bend.”
After that bubbly discussion, the entire crew united—on Zoom of course—to pick apart the use and purpose of genres. Genre gatekeeping and the history of genre and its ties to communities are just some of the important topics that the crew tackled in this episode. Listen to find out what the crew theorizes the future of genre to be.
This episode was brought to you by executive producer Sam Small, senior editors Emily Ohl and Max Rosenzweig, content creators Avin Katyal and Max Schabel, audio producers Ben Schrier, Sam DuBose, and Will Pederson, and audio engineer Spencer Harris.
Thanks for listening! Stay tuned for more episodes.