Alison Moon / Palms Middle School 8th grade
During the mid-twentieth century, the crowd went wild as the start of a new era of music began, rock and roll. During the early twenty-first century, the crowd went wild as artists like Guns N’ Roses, Calvin Harris, and Sia sang their way across the stage at Coachella. Music, in many ways, holds the ability to stir a person’s emotions. It can allow someone to be cheered up or calmed down. Our world is forever influenced by the creation of music. Starting from the beginning of mankind, we, as humans have always enjoyed creating sounds. We interpret sounds differently and have our own specific definition of music. Music holds a special power that can change a person’s perspective. The New American, a small magazine company states, “This is no doubt why Ludwig van Beethoven said, ‘Music can change the world,’ and William Congreve famously wrote that music ‘has charms to soothe a savage breast.’ And music’s power is tacitly acknowledged all the time.”
The popular music of our day reflects the culture of our day. We can see the fingerprints of a certain generation in the lyrics and sound of that time. One almost outrageous example of this is the song “#SELFIE” by the Chainsmokers. It shines a spotlight on the youth of our community and the media culture of our days. And in this present age, culture is changing far more frequently than ever before, reflecting styles of music that are evolving and birthed just as rapidly. Interestingly, it wasn’t always so.
“There were times and places, for example, Europe during the Middle Ages, where music might remain largely the same for hundreds of years,” writes Selwyn Duke in “Influential Beats: The Cultural Impact of Music.” “And it is no coincidence that in medieval times something else also remained quite constant: culture. It is clear to me that changes in music are intertwined closely to changes in society’s consensus worldview. This explains why musical tastes change so quickly today. “With no dominant cultural stabilizer, such as the Catholic Church (whose medieval influence is undeniable); the ability to transmit ideas worldwide at a button’s touch via modern media…society is prone to continual arbitrary change,”states The New American.
In other words, culture and music flow together. What our parents used to enjoy, kids of today would deem as old-fashioned and outdated. And in a few years, the music we think is amazing now, will probably be old in a few years. It’s nothing against the music. It’s just a representation, a manifestation of what’s constantly changing around us. With that said, we need to be very aware of our modern day culture, but more importantly, we need to be intentional about the cultures we want to create and cultivate with our music.
<Alison Moon / Palms Middle School 8th grade