Modern melodies or new noise

by Larysa Musick

Lined up in my parents’ basement, next to an old record player, are stacks of vinyl. Albums by Led Zepplin, Styx, Supertramp, and The Beatles are sliding sideways like the Leaning Tower of Pisa. In my mind, I imagine the stacks tipping over into an abyss.

The changing music scene unnerves me.

Call me old school, but pressing play on a streaming site doesn’t feel as homey as dropping the needle on some shiny vinyl.

Despite my scruples about the new ways we music listen to music, I try to keep up with my friends who look at me funny when I slip a CD into my van’s music player.

“As long as the musicians are getting paid what they deserve,” I say to myself, as I hit the shuffle all button on Spotify.

But maybe artists aren’t getting paid.

According to Xapp Media, based on data from RIAA and IFPI, profit percentages were the smallest for artists: 11% to songwriters, 8% to recording artists, 50% to the music labels, and 30% to audio streaming services.

What’s the deal? Why are the creators getting the smallest slice of the pie?

This isn’t good for my peace of mind. On top of it all, the barrage of song choices on streaming apps and sites can’t be relaxing for my brain.

Have you ever heard of decision fatigue? Roy F. Baumeister came up with this psychological phenomenon, which says the quality of a person’s decisions worsens with each choice the person makes.

So, when you listen to music online, there’s consequences for your brain and the artists you love.

Maybe being old school isn’t such a bad idea — pop a CD into your boom box, your brain will thank you.