Gwyneth Osborne

Blog 3

Professor Johnson


            Sousa’s pessimistic view about mechanical music and its potential malefic on music as an art form stems from concerns about technology and its growing role in society. Sousa is a bit of a luddite concerning automatic music, predicating it will take away the incentive to learn music in the home and play at an amateur level. He goes on to state, “It is simply a question of time when the amateur disappears entirely, and with him a host of vocal and instrumental teachers,” revealing his concern about jobs disappearing at the hands of mechanical music. Another issue Sousa has with mechanical music is the lack of copyright laws to protect the intellectual property of composers. This is particularly damaging when music is being reproduced at a fast rate all over the country without any government monitoring, as it was at this time. I think that artists in the music industry today struggle with a similar issue when dealing with streaming services. Beyoncé and Taylor Swift taking their music off of traditional streaming services a few years ago was an example of artists fighting back against creative theft, which I’m sure Sousa would approved of.