Globalization and Music
Globalization is the progression of international integration among companies, people and regimes of different countries; it is a process driven by transnational trade and investment and supported by information technology (Philip, 2001). It is characterized new technologies, new communication, new community functions, and a new culture.in regard to music and music making there has been an increase in the variety of musical styles spreading globally; on the other hand, the increasing transformations has led to the loss of many musical practices as globalization does not prioritize traditional diversity.
According to Walter (2000), globalization has impacted music and music making both positively and negatively. The influence of music in the world is immeasurable such that it surfaces old memories, arouses many feelings and provides a human connection. Music assists in identifying other cultures, learning from and about them, and also provides a sense of knowledge (Philip, 2001). It can be used for communication, relaxation and stimulation. On the flip side, it can be used for resistance and some is resorting to music piracy which cripples the industry. According to Stockford (2014), the advancement of high technological products assists in the production of music products, music tools such as compact disc and MP3, which provides an environment for listening music. Secondly, there has been the development of production models from old-fashioned music into a mature music industry as it contains instruments, music products sales (poster, T-shirt, accessories, and brand) and organized tours. Thirdly the Internet has impacted the music industry such that anyone can now download a variety of music from anywhere and download software that assist in music making, and finally a new culture and new music style develops by the blend of world music.
Globalization supports the world music market and music variety to gain admiration, hence growth to an export market resulting to higher profits. Pop musicians produce their products carefully now in order to deliver to the peoples expectation worldwide by incorporating colorful music image and dancing styles (Rupa, 2005). The internet has also assisted musicians to promote their shows and market their CDs without spending. In addition, television music managers use independent musicians persistently as they do not have to pay the expensive royalties that they would pay when transacting with major label record acts.
For instance, Céline Claudette Dion is a Canadian singer (Pop, dance, rock, contemporary) who began as a teen star in the French world. According to Stockford (2014), Celine Dion’s music career has been impacted greatly by globalization. Dion’s music has been influenced by many varieties namely; rock, R&B, gospel and classical. She has recorded her songs in many languages from different cultural background like French, Spanish, Latin, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese Italian, German, and mainly English. Dion has also won five Grammy Awards and in 2004, she surpassed 175 million in album sales worldwide becoming the best-selling female artist of all time (Stockford, 2014).
According to Stockford (2014), she has worked together with many well-known writers and producers like David Foster and Jim Steinman, who assisted her to develop a signature sound 1996 using the latest technologies present. She won the World Music Award for being the bestselling female recording artist of the year severally. Celine Dion has also participated in grand openings ceremonies for major functions around the world like the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. In Canada, she received an honor for having contributed outstandingly in the world of contemporary music globally she also wrote and published her autobiography, titled My Story, My Dream which narrated her story comprehensively (Ray, 2013).
Dion has also contributed to worldwide cohesion and patriotism through her music; she once performed “God Bless America” with the Band of the U.S. Air Force. In May 2010, Dion was named the most appreciated musician in the United States while factoring in political affiliations, gender, income and geographic region of residence (Stockford, 2014). She was able to work in partnership with other musicians like Barbra Streisand and Bee Gees, who were great forces in her recording career. She addressed worldwide poverty and hunger, with prominence on romance and love in her lyrics.
Celine Dion stands as a symbol of pop sensibility in her music styles. During the Katrina hurricane disaster, Dion appeared on Larry King Live tearfully criticizing the U.S. government’s sluggish response in relieving the victims saying she had an opinion not as a politician but as a singer (Ray, 2013).
Many artists have mentioned Dion as a major inspiration including; Jordin Sparks, Leona Lewis, Jennifer Hudson and Ariana Grande. Her albums are still the best selling francophone albums in history gaining unmatched success in markets such as the United Kingdom, japan and many more. In 2008, Dion was awarded the Legion of Honor from the France President Nicolas Sarkozy for further demonstrating her cultural impact (Ray, 2013).
According to Stockford (2014), she owns the Feeling Inc., an artist management company which nurtures new talent and is a recording company at the same time.in addition, Dion signed a contract with Coty, Inc. to release Perfumes in her name.in giving back to the community, she has keenly supported several charity organizations worldwide like the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (CCFF) , joined celebrities, athletes and politicians to support World Children‘s Day and donated $1 million to the victims of the hurricane Katrina.
Change in the music industry is not the result of globalization but an aspect of globalization. According to Rupa (2005) globalized music is a system which chains both economy and society. Although the music widens the world market and advances new music styles, it challenges the local music’s uniqueness. The fact that commercialized music focuses on packaging and quantity of music-related stuff; it decreases the quality of music (Rupa, 2005). Music now can impact to a greater extent cultural and social ideas because it can be infiltrated so much deeper now as Music is the universal language of man (Ray, 2013).
Armbrust Walter, (2000), ‘Introduction: Anxieties of Scale’, in Mass Mediations: New Approaches to Popular Culture in the Middle East and Beyond. California University Press.
Bohlman Philip, (2001), World Music: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press.
Broughton Simon, (1999/2000), World Music: The Rough Guide. Penguin: Rough Guides.
Huq Rupa, (2005), Beyond Subculture: Youth and Pop in a Multi-Ethnic World. Routledge.
Janine Stockford, (2014), Celine Dion and Shania Twain: the Globalization of Canada’s Pop Divas. Ottawa: Library and Archives Canada.
Michael Ray, (2013), Alternative, Country, Hip-Hop, Rap, and More: Music from the 1980s to Today. Chicago: Britannica Educational Pub