How Did Perceptions of Music Change with the Internet?

AM radio. TV. Records. FM. Tapes. Live music. These are the ways that I experienced music up to college as part of the analog generation.
Once I became a member of society, CDs became popular and music was suddenly all digitized. CDs, MDs (MiniDiscs), iPods. I consumed a great deal of music, and it became portable. I also watched videos more often. It is not necessarily true that people have grown more distant from music or interact with it in a more shallow manner. Things have not changed so much.
Thereafter music moved to the Internet: Napster, iTunes, YouTube. Cell phone ringtones and songs. Subscription services. Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play….

How do you suppose the digital generation born in the 80’s and the Internet generation born in the 90’s came to listen to music after CDs, iPods, cell phones, and the Internet?
The social generation students, who attended my seminar, were born in the 2000’s and have not yet come of age. However, there are a great many people in the digital and Internet generation, and so I tried listening to how their relationships with music have changed.

Their experience is roughly shared. In the second half of the 90’s, rental CDs were recorded on MDs, and starting around 2000 Napster became a regular mp3 player, which was followed by iPods and iTunes. This further moved to YouTube and smartphones, and now people are trying out streaming music.

So how have attitudes changed? First, the mindset has changed from single album units to single song units. Rather, there is no such concept as an album. One also hears that there is a rapid decrease in how often and how much music people buy.
It seems this generation also has no instinct to listen systematically. We followed chronological trends. We learned of The Rolling Stones, moved to Led Zeppelin and glam rock, concluded in punk...it was that kind of vibe. But this generation has gotten simultaneous hold of the music of all generations and history. They aimlessly listen according to their own predilections: “this one’s good,” etc. They are different from our musically impoverished selves, who worry that they do not understand the whole picture or its interrelatedness.
They say that everyone has become closer with music, that musical relationships have deepened. But there are also people who say it has become casual. While some people steadily dig deeper into the works of artists they enjoy, there are those who listen for free to nothing but the same artist, or those who use radio-like streaming as a kind of “all-you-can-listen” service.
This is diversification. Some remain of the artist-focused CD school of thought and say subscriptions are unnecessary. People seeking large volumes of music are attracted by new services, and people who did not originally listen to music have also drawn closer to music through viral media and such. 

It seems that social networking will bring about more definite change than devices.
Opportunities to draw closer to and know musical composition and musicians have increased. Artists become widely known through being shared by friends and followers.

 There are also people who were indifferent to music in the time of CDs, MDs (MiniDiscs), and iPods, but started listening for the first time through social networking, and also began attending live performances. People are growing closer to music and becoming able to set their feet in real venues through information sharing and spreading.
The key is “music and communication.” That is, music is the center of a communication and community social phenomenon.

We can also say that the strengthening of bonds between artists, fans, and fellow fans has resulted in music migrating from “consumption” to “sharing.”


”The Birth of Izakaya”

  I read ”The Birth of Izakaya” by Ryoichi Ino. Edo had a great number of single men, which fully developed into the open drinking culture of modern-day Tokyo.
  Apparently there was one bar per 550 people both 200 years ago and in Tokyo today. 
  Edo people liked bars that much.
    If we compare how much Edo period people drank with how much Tokyo citizens drink, the alcohol content does not change.
  Edo citizens drank that much.
   Cheap sake is about ¥50 per 150mg. Pretty cheap.
   Good sake is about ¥300.
   Why not drink, at that price?
   Bars are open from the early morning, and from the early morning people are in there drinking.
  Yes, you notice such people even now in the streets of Tokyo.
    The missionary Luís Fróis visited Japan in the 16th century and said that Japanese people have an abnormal drinking style where they regularly fall into unconsciousness. An act worthy of derision in other countries is a point of pride for the Japanese.

    Then there is the record of Kikuya Osumi drinking down 4.5kg of sake at a drinking party 200 years ago.
    Women showing pride about drinking heavily: is this not a display of wealth?
    The book “Shiju Hakkuse” describes how women in tenement houses had care of midday meal preparation, and catered hot sake, boiled pufferfish, and tuna sashimi from bars to houses. Records show that they began merrily drinking with the neighborhood people.
    They seem to have been happier than the women of today.

    It is said that 18th century central Tokyo offered not only chicken, but hot pot, deer and wild boar as well.
   Tuna was looked down upon as an unrefined fish.     
   That is luxury.
    In western restaurants, you choose your meal first and order wine to accompany it; however, in Edo bars, just as in modern Tokyo bars, people ordered alcohol and followed with food. 
    Alcohol played the starring role.

    You see, I’m wondering if we couldn’t produce a “drinker’s culture” by the year 2020.
    Maybe we should make Takeshiba a special zone for drinkers.


The CiP Digital Special Zone: What We Want to Achieve

The CiP (Contents Innovation Program) is a plan to construct a digital and content zone in Takeshiba, Minato Ward, Tokyo. The third interview question was, "What do we want to achieve with the CiP?”

We want to make a creative space unlike any other in the world. We want to create a new Tokyo that has things that can be found nowhere else.
We want a production cycle involving R&D, human resource cultivation, business startup support, and business matching.

Nevertheless, it will not be a government-manufactured place of inorganic matter, nor a monetized space like Silicon Valley. It will rather be a place of flesh and blood, of music: a culture that condenses the dim haze of high spirits.

It will be an assembly area for the bold and ambitious, like the MIT Media Lab. It will accumulate production activity like that of Workshop Collection. It will have a business support environment that evokes the 500 Startups. It will have conventions like the Niconico Convention, the Comic Market Convention, mixed martial-arts rings, etc. Every new day will dawn on a city that unifies all such elements.

That place will have research education like the CKL of Seoul, wealth like the ECB of Frankfurt, a chaotic free spirit like that of Marché in Morocco, rising sea spray like the beaches of Barcelona, and ever-present music and dance like Caminito in Buenos Aires. 

Cool men and women will stride up and down the streets like in Via Montenapoleone in Milano, the government will be as sincere as that in Singapore, children will dash about as in Parc de la Villette in Paris, it will have exquisite food and spirits like Ponto-cho in Kyoto, and the west coast and Tokyo will blend like in Sanfransokyo of Big Hero 6. It will be a place overflowing with creativity.

Such is the national strategy special zone. It will have a treasured archive of past live performances and CMs “you can only see here.” Broadcasts that deviate from impartiality can be performed. Using IT equipment which must not be used outside will spark excitement.

In this place, open marathon conventions in the neighborhood will track athletes by a drone assigned to each one. These will reinforce the runner and give a constant image that spectators can follow on their smartphones. Superhumans will have physical enhancements influenced by special radio waves and earnestly throw themselves into sports training.

Schools will open ultra-gifted classes where prohibited devices are allowed. Autonomous robots will have charge of lunch serving and school cleaning duties. Children without licenses will be allowed to ride in air cars. Through the windows they will be able to see massive screens that disregard outdoor advertising regulations. A huge film festival will open over the surface of the sea. Life-sized Gundams will leap across the water.

We will bind Kyoto and Okinawa, and produce, edit, and distribute videos. With Keio University, the University of Tokyo, government research institutions, Stanford University, etc., we will create a collaborative research organization. We would also like for Oxford University, the National University of Singapore, and others to participate.

This small space will be tightly packed with a new kind of creative cultural fusion.

It’s definitely possible. And I think it cannot be done anywhere else.