While music primarily as entertainment, it is entirely plenty of other fields as well. From marketing and business to medicine and investment, the impact of music is being felt everywhere. As trends push songs, bands and music studies deeper into new sectors, here are several interesting fields you can expect to see innovative activity in during 2014.
1. Music Therapy
Music therapy has been around for many years, but expect much faster development in this area in the coming year. Out of all the music disciplines, music therapy is benefiting more than most from the rise of digital technologies, which allow specific therapies and tools to be accessed online across the world. As music therapy moves into the mainstream, you can expect to see it more and more frequently as part of traditional psychotherapy and therapist sessions. It can be used to help deal with anxiety, pain, mood control, emotional difficulties, and many other issues.
2. Education Aid
As in therapy, music in education is also benefiting from greater mainstream acceptance and new technologies. In 2014 teachers will grow more willing to use music in nearly every type of class. The benefits will be especially noticeable when it comes to teaching mathematical concepts, and when professionals develop new teaching methods for those with specific learning disabilities. Music education aid has already proved to have merits in helping autistic children to learn, for example. Applications will grow in the future.
Expect more companies than ever before to use music in their branding campaigns in 2014. Musical branding can take several different forms, depending on the company. As relationships with Spotify, Slacker, Pandora and other streaming services grow, more and more businesses will begin to share their brand with customized playlists and styles. For brands with enough purchasing power, skipping the old-fashioned labels and signing talented bands directly is possible – a strategy pursued by Red Bull and other youth-oriented companies.
4. Cognition Research
What makes us human? What traits of consciousness do we share with other things? Music and musical appreciation are some of the most unique things about the human mind (even considering the approximations of birds and whales). In 2014, scientists will use music to judge the consciousness capabilities of other things, too. Can pets appreciate music? What type of songs do they enjoy? Can robots be taught or programmed to “enjoy” music on the way to artificial intelligence? These questions will inspire plenty of news stories in the coming years.
5. Hospice Care
For those with chronic or terminal conditions, music offers several very specific benefits. In addition to managing pain, music can also help improve dangerous conditions such as diabetes, breathing trouble, blood pressure, and a host of other issues affected by sensory stimulation. For patients facing terminal disease and death, music can offer peace and spiritual restoration. You can expect to see musical technology and features cropping up in more and more hospices in the future.
6. Wearable Devices
2014 will be the year of wearable devices. From clothing that lets you control your iPod to Google Glass and the new array of smart watches, technology is invading what we wear. Where technology goes, music soon follows. Expect to see a new wave of apps designed to put music in your clothing, around your eyes, and on your wrist in new and unexpected ways.
Musical investment sounds like a strange idea at first, but fans love the idea of being able to vote for bands with their wallets and winning performances as a result. This will turn into crowdfunded concerts where bands literally go where the money is, holding crowdfunding activities online so they can be assured of a profitable show before they show up. Crowdfunding will also be used more frequently to help create albums for indie bands…and maybe those not so indie.
Mood Media delivers in-store media marketing solutions, complete with customized music for business. Hillary Cates is an independent writer, specializing in the merging of cutting-edge technology and marketing.