BBC’s New World Music Archive: Where Will It Take The Next Generation Of Musicians?
A newly released global music database could provide a strong influence on the next crop of artists.
The BBC recently launched the World Music Archive. Offering over 100 hours of content, the archive brings pop music from the world’s most conflict-ridden regions to the fore, including North Korea, Iran and Cuba. While it does offer a glimpse at the wider music scene across the world, it will be interesting to see how the access to this music affects the current crop of musicians in the West.
Previously, most of this music was difficult to find or not made readily available within the Western world in such a prominent, organized way — with the exception of record labels like Sublime Frequencies. Yet if the rise of bands like Animal Collective or the recent appearance of Syrian pop star Omar Souleyman at Central Park’s Summerstage are any indication, Western ears are not just curious about the music of pop stars from Uganda and Afghanistan, but they actually want to create a dialogue about it. Consequently, as the Internet allows for the flow of appropriation to take hold, the power of such a database may become more of an influence on musicians than any blog or music publication.