Future Music

Future Music

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Theremin
Terpsitone
Louis & Bebe Barron
Doctor Who
Electric Carillon
Light-Beam Piano
Trillion-Tone Piano
Staccatone & Pianorad
Electric Xylophone
Trautonium
Electronic Violin
Ondes Martenot
Marimbalite
Lumichord
Clavilux & Telecolor
Moog

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If music be the food of love, do I get fries with that? 

Talking about the music of the future is an exercise in pure frustration because what you are dealing with, in essence, is the future of art.  You may be able to predict what rockets, robots, or computerised shoes will be like in Future Past, but art?  The only thing you can say for certain is that no matter what wins the Turner Prize it will probably be something that the cleaning lady will mistake for an overturned litter bin and chuck out two days later. 

Depictions of future music therefore tend to fall into three groups:

First, you have the idea that music in the 21st century will be pretty much the same as it is today.  If you're looking from the 1950s, then it'll be show tunes.   If it's the '60s, then it'll be Beatles retreads.  If it's today... It doesn't bear thinking about.

Second, there are the predictions that focus on the technology.  The future may be pop, classical, or polka calypso fusion, but whatever it is, it'll be played on computerised electronic mandolins lit up with neon piping and a voder back-up singer thrown in and that's what's important.

The third is, of course, Star Wars cantina gags-- which the above illustration by Emsh shows wasn't all that original in the first place.

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