Music and the Internet

Illustration of a beet, referencing Play with my Beets, by Diego Gonzalez, Class of 2018. Click on the image to visit his musical website.
Click on the image above to visit a musical website created by Diego Gonzalez ’18.

How is the internet shaping music today? That’s the question music professor Zachary Wadsworth explored with his students in his new course, Music and the Internet.

“While it has granted listeners access to broad music libraries and musicians access to large audiences, the Internet has also exposed listeners to legal action, taxed artists with dwindling royalties and disrupted and reshaped the recording and publishing industries,” Wadsworth wrote in his description of the course, which he taught in the fall. “This course examines how the Internet has affected music at every level, from its creation to its distribution and consumption.”

Illustration of a smart phone with a selfie. Click on it to visit a SoundCloud site and hear "Linear Life" by Jazmin Bramble '20.
Click on the above image to see and hear “Linear Life,” by Jazmin Bramble ’20.

In addition to studying concepts like authorship, piracy and the ownership of culture and content, students developed their own version of the Radiohead song “Nude,” used Google Doodle to compose original music, wrote and distributed a song using Internet channels and created a “Black MIDI”—a composition that uses MIDI files to create a song remix containing a large number of notes, typically in the thousands, millions and, sometimes, billions.

At the top of this page is an arrangement of  “The Mountains” by Henry Hobbs ’18.