Century. A movement which spurred an increase in the availability of mass media and helped usher in an era where music was shaped by emerging technologies, transforming not only the songs of the 90s, but changing the world of music for the decades ahead.
At the epicenter of the new wave of technological innovations in the 90s was the digital revolution. Bulky, single-purpose mobile phones were replaced with smaller devices loaded with lots of embedded functionality. The internet grew exponentially from anonymity to become a digital communication and information super highway adopted by 50% of Western Countries. Helping to increase the dominance of the internet was Intel’s creation of the Pentium chip. For their part, computer hardware manufacturers added staples to their personal computer offerings such as CD burners and CD Rom drives.
With the onslaught of new technology came a transformation of the songs of the 90s. The 1990s heralded the dawn of the boy band, teen pop sensations, commercial and sampled hip-hop music tracks. Even armchair musicians would be given a chance to make more significant musical contributions with the glut in musical technology as it became possible for a wider number of musicians to produce electronic music. What started out sounding like dance music was gradually less targeted towards the dance-floor audience and more towards home listeners. This genre later became known as “Electronica”, or in its slower manifestations, “Chill-out” or “Ambient music”.
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