Occasionally, I’ll go through spells where I walk everywhere with my iPod listening to music. I listen to it on the bus (instead of reading) and I switch from playlist to playlist depending on my mood and occasionally dig through my library for ‘the perfect’ song for a particular moment (like the Counting Crows’ “
This (possibly invented) phenomenon makes me wonder about the iPod’s possible effects on musical composition and invention. I’m thinking about 13-19 years down the road when a generation of young musicians that has grown up in an iPod inundated world and wondering what might be the effect on music creation. If it’s true that the ability to imagine music is interrupted by the ability to always be able to hear music, what then becomes of the musical imagination? Musical composition is always at least partly musical derivation. But by being constantly presented with the musical actuality, does the imagined music (and thereby its derivations) suffer? Is the prevalence of musical sampling as a new musical art form a result of the iPod (and earlier the Walkman) age? What might this mean for future musical creativity (if anything)?