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World Music 2.0

April 8, 2010

Word Music 2.0 is a term I saw in writing for the first time today. A friend, DJ Umb said on his Facebook page: WORLD MUSIC 2.0..what a load of colonialist B*LL%$”^$….pls don’t categorize me with any of that S%$*!!!!!

I’d only been familiar with the term for 2 seconds and I already knew he was right. I already hate the old term world music – as if any music came from another world.

I did some digging. I came across this reference on a website:
Ethnomusicologist/DJ/Blogger/Writer Wayne Marshall calls this music World Music 2.0, highlighting how digital production technology and the internet has created new, younger, international audiences for music from other places.

Music from ‘other places’. As opposed to where he lives, I presume.

Here’s an article about World 2.0:
http://www.thenational.ae/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20091231/REVIEW/701019840/1007
It says this: ….world music 2.0 is a bottom-feeder, obsessed with microcultures breeding on YouTube, invite-only chat rooms and other obscure corners of the internet where the line between producer and consumer blurs, and most songs end up being given away for free.

The rise of cheap computers and music software piracy has led to an ever-increasing swarm of subgenres, from Berber R&B to West African hiplife. The songs make their way online to kids around the world for whom similarities in methodology – MP3 players on “shuffle”, shared software techniques, MySpace-optimised networking and self-presentation skills – trump genre as an organising principle. On their DJ mixes, in their remixes, and at their parties, Argentine electro rubs up against South African house music by way of Belgians evoking Detroit techno, plus or minus a Lady Gaga remix.

What a crock! Patronising nonsense. Why can’t our crappy, pathetic, inherently racist, accountant- driven, unimaginative music industry people call musical forms by their real names, market them respectfully, stop dreaming up stupid generic terms for diverse things and show some bloody respect to the musicians they’re profiting from?

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. sanjaykundalia permalink
    April 8, 2010 2:40 pm

    no to world music

  2. April 8, 2010 10:52 pm

    agreed on the uselessness of world music, with any suffix, to describe anything at all. it’s too small anyway, i’d play stuff from barnard’s star if i could find it.

    i think a vaguely all encompassing term would be useful though – my own term for what I do is either global-folk-party-breaks or gypo-ragga-ghetto-disko… they’re both pretty accurate if you give someone a minute to think about it but they hardly roll off the tongue.

    I won’t be using the term World Music 2.0 any time soon (though I have a lot of respect for most of what Wayne Marshall writes) but I don’t think it’s disrespectful to anyone to try and apply a label to these disparate forms which do seem to represent a sort of scene, a thing happening – ultimately it’s nice to be able to explain what you do to someone and have them get the general gist of it without needing to get a notebook out.

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