The Evolution of Music & DAWs
Nobody can deny that the evolution of music is amazing and the music itself is a powerful force that can shape personalities and brings people together. Throughout history, various musical genres have evolved out of nowhere.
From Electronic Dance Music (EDM) with its pulsating beats, to Rap/Hip Hop’s lyrical density, House Music’s catchy melodies to Trap Music’s trendy tones – every music style has its unique characteristics that captivate audiences worldwide.
Changing the game
The first big evolution of music came in In 1994, Magix Music Maker.
This DAW was released and was a revolution in the music production world. This sparked a flurry of new people getting into music production as it was not previously easily assessable. Magix Music Maker is still going strong today and is used by many producers worldwide.
In the year, 1996, Cakewalk Pro Audio 4 and Steinberg Cubase VST were also released and were great DAWs for their time. They were considered hard to use and not so beginner friendly at the time. Cuebase is another great and popular DAW still used today.
Enter, the mighty Fruity Loops
Skip to a year later in 1997 and a DAW no one saw coming would release from Image-Line that would change everything: Fruity Loops.
The mighty Fruity Loops, or FL Studio, as it’s known today, changed the entire industry, Looking at it today looks very basic indeed, however back in 1997 it was revolutionary. Image-Line changed the game due to its easy-to-understand user interface and to this day still manages to maintain that same easy useability style. Fruity Loops is a prime example of the evolution of music.
Pushing the envelope
If you are old enough to remember, In the year 2000 and with the evolution of music software and the internet we saw new digital audio workstations(DAWs) such as Reason from Propellerhead and FL Studio, or FruityLoops, as it was known back then. These DAWS really started to push the boundaries and set new standards as far as production software was concerned.
The introduction of these DAWs really started to revolutionize the music creation industry with huge advancements every year.
The rise of the bedroom producer
With all this technological advancement that made making music accessible to everyone, cue the horde of new bedroom producers. These bedroom producers were ordinary people with a passion to make music and many of them were extremely talented. Of course with this huge influx of new people then came many new music genres.
We saw mind-bending genres like Dubstep popping up and many other sub-genres being created. It was almost too much to keep up with and music production exploded back then and this shaped the musical world we live in today.
The facts on the evolution of music
So now we have taken a look at a brief history of the evolution of music software, now let’s take a look at some data from different genres and their popularity over time.
This interesting collaboration of data shows the interest in music genres over time. Instead of taking a look at all the mainstream music genres we have chosen some subgenres and smaller genres that were created around the time of the introduction of DAWs like Fruity Loops and Reason.
Popular Music Genres over time
Drum and bass
With the widespread availability of new production software the UK-born Drum and Bass exploded in the 00s. but over time has been slowly declining in interest.
We can see Dubstep also exploded in 2012 even taking over genres like Trance, Hip-Hop, and oddly enough even the mighty EDM, but that only lasted around 2-4 years. It declined to almost nothing compared to other budding genres.
In the early 90s and 00s Trance music was huge, with DJs like Armin van Buuren and Tiësto taking center stage. Trance continued a steady trend up until around 2015 and has been declining in interest ever since.
Unless you have lived under a rock, everyone has heard house music at some point. House music has always had a massive following and probably always will, at least for the foreseeable future. House music is on the decline since 2017. We can see that although it has declined it still has a very strong hold.
According to the averages on this chart, Rap music is king. As you probably know, this popular genre has been adopted worldwide, although slightly on the decline recently. Rap is being overtaken by EDM, however, Rap still has a huge audience even with the drop in numbers recently.
This dance genre covers so many other genres. EDM has so many sub-genres that listing them all would be difficult. However, EDM as a whole exploded in 2013 thanks to popular DJs and producers like David Guetta. It’s worth noting that EDM is not a subgenre like some of these other comparisons.
This genre, known as trap music was invested during the boom of the influx of new software towards the late 90s. Trap music was a relatively unknown genre and then all of a sudden in 2012 seemed to explode. After rising in popularity for 3 years, in 2017 trap again exploded in popularity. Trap music then declined but still stays strong to this date.
Hip-Hop was huge in the 90s, Hip-hop has held its own for many years, however now we see that the popularity of hip-hop music has declined into extraordinarily low levels of interest as of late.
Wrapping up on the evolution of music & software
The evolution of music genres is synonymous with technological advancements throughout the years. With the introduction of game-changing software such as Magix Music Maker, Cakewalk Pro Audio, and Fruity Loops (now known as FL Studio). The doors were then opened for bedroom producers looking to break their silence and into the scene. Through the years, we’ve seen an incredible variety of sounds and styles come alive.
Despite fluctuations in popularity between genres, one thing remains certain – the power of music to captivate audiences and bring people together is undeniable. The evolution of electronic music genres continues to push the boundaries of creativity, innovation, and self-expression.
If you are one of these upcoming music producers that focuses on one specific genre, make music because you love doing it.