In a world that is constantly changing and evolving technologically, the purchase of CDs is slowly declining. With the introduction of iTunes, iPods and iPhones, there is virtually no need to carry around an artists’ album (except for sentimental value).
With that being said– do people really listen to artists’ work (say, a CD) in the order that the artist intended it to be heard? This means sitting down and listening to an album from start to finish– track one until the end.
For me, personally, the order of an album has begun to matter less. Usually, I make my own playlists and put them on shuffle on my iPhone. I don’t like listening to the same order of songs multiple times– it’s repetitive and boring.
My playlists usually have multiple albums from different artists. For example, right now I have a playlist made up of albums by Frank Ocean, The Weeknd, Kendrick Lamar, and Bei Maejor. Now, these artists aren’t even all the same genre of music– and it’s this variety in particular that attracts me to this playlist.
Other playlists are just made up of random songs that provoke the same feelings: excitement, happiness, sadness, etc. I have playlists that I listen to around my friends, and ones for when I’m in my sad or stressed moods.
When I first buy a CD off of iTunes is the only time I’ll sit down and listen to a CD from beginning to end. From there, I pick my favorite songs, and neglect all of the others.
This is not uncommon. Among my group of friends, it’s more often that I hear the phrase “have you heard that new song? It’s really good…” rather than “have you heard this new album?”.
In a way, this saddens me. By not listening to full CDs from individual artists, we can’t really appreciate the creativity and effort put into the album. Artists tend to want their albums to be recieved a specific way, and by skipping around songs we are not listening to them in the ‘correct’ way.
Pandora has also changed the way that people listen to music. With Pandora, one can simply enter the name of a song or artist and a playlist will be generated with songs that are similar. This greatly changes the way that people interact with their music: they don’t even have to know the name of an album at all, only a specific song.