Columbia Records

In 1887 the Columbia Phonograph and the American Graphophone Company’s were founded and would eventually come to form Columbia Records. This company was not only well known for its impact on music and the American recording industry, but also for its impact on modern life. Being around for one hundred and twenty-five years, Columbia Records has came to bring us many of the tracks we know today from many artist we know if love. These artist rage from modern day talents such as Adele, all the way to classics like Bob Dylan and everything in between. The power of influence upon the creative mind is tremendous, and who are artist influenced by? Other artist, and Columbia Records provided us with over a hundred different artists/bands many of which are award winning. Within the names you would see that it would include some greats such as Leonard Bernstein, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, Al Jolson, Barbra Streisand, Bessie Smith, Johnny Cash, and so many more that shaped the industry into what it is today. Without this record label where would the music industry be today? I’m not saying it wouldn’t be as enjoyable, but I think we can all agree when I say it wouldn’t be the same. Even though the need for major labels in todays music industry is dying off and the age of independent artist is growing, we wouldn’t be here today with out them. Things are always changing in the entertainment industry, are you ready to adapt? I am, I’m willing to do whatever it takes to be successful in this industry. It all starts with a dream and some inspiration. In the next five years from now I see myself working with artist and producers to achieve the sound they want for their piece of art that they’re trying to showcase to the world. Whether big or small, I just hope to help my client make a masterpiece that they would be proud of.






Electronic Music Innovation (Afirka Bambaataa)

Kevin Donovan (aka Afrika Bambaataa) is one of the main originators of break beat deejaying. He was a very popular in South Bronx back in the 80’s as a DJ. Bambaataa also had two rap crews, the Jazzy 5 and Soul Sonic Force. Both “Jazzy Sensation” by Jazzy 5 and “Zulu Nation Throwdown” by Soul Sonic Force were debuted in 1980 and were classic hip hop anthems. Though this wasn’t impacting the electronic music, it did get Afrika Bambaataa a lot of respect. He had already earned himself the nickname “Master of Records” because he had encyclopedic like knowledge of funk grooves. An electronic “beat box” rhythm was played on a synthesizer by John Robie, then the hook was modeled after a song that was popular with the youth. That song was“Trans Europe Express” by Kraftwerk. The end result was a pop hit “Planet Rock”, this gave Afrika Bambaattaa and Soul Sonic Force a hit that went gold. It hit the chart at #48 in 1982. The song itself spawned different types of music such as, dance music and “electro-boogie” rap. This hit brought a lot of attention to this new style of music and went on to influence the development of the hip hop culture. Bambaataa is known as a Founding Father of Hip-Hop, Grandfather/Godfather, as well as The Father of the Electro Funk Sound. The creation of “Planet Rock” will always show forth its influences by the music we’ve heard and continue to hear. Today EDM, Techno, Trap, and other genre all incorporate the same idea in a sense, the sounds themselves have changed throughout time. One if the biggest things out right now is remixing rap/ hip hop music for clubs, most of the time this involves electronic instruments and sounds to achieve the goal. Where would music be today without artist/DJ’s such as Afrika Bambaataa?




Kraftwerk was a German band, they wore suits and ties that played rather odd insturments. They set out to create a new image for the German culture with the influences of The Beach Boys. Kraftwerk had the dsire to be well known around the globe. They were the start of German’s style, look, and sound. Trying to focus on the good things that their country had brought upon us. While bringing a new electronic sound along with it. This resulted in “Autobahn” which was a hit a reached number 11. This was taken by surprise since many believed the song was a gimmick. Kratwerk used word play in which Americans could refer to in the English language. Kraftwerk would go on to release more songs along the same concepts. These song would incase electronic sounds that would go on and sort of shape the future for music. Not all music but but many genres were incorporating these sounds and instruments. The sounds that were created by Kratwerk could only be described as alien or erotic. These same sounds influenced a major recording artist who was a glam rock star, David Bowie. This can be observed in his work on “Heroes”. Many artist have sampled their work. One for example would beJay-Z sampled “The Man Machine” for his song “Sunshine” in 1997.Eventually they would go on to do songs in multiple languages, these include; German, English, Spanish, French, Japanese, and a Slavic language. This is very popular today, for a song to be translated into multiple languages, whether it be by the original artist or someone who is covering the song in their native tongue. Where would music be today without a revolutionary band such as Kraftwerk? They have influenced so many aspect of electronic music without it things would be so different. The impression I’m left with from the work of Kraftwerk is desire to be different but themselves all at the same time. That is an amazing trait.



Top 10 Influential Artists in Electronic Music




Marvin Gaye “What’s Going On”

Marvin Gaye’s image before the release of his song “What’s Going On” he seemed like he was more laid back and calm in my opinion, as if he was still finding himself with his music and being an artist. Cracking out his shell you could say. When he incorporated jazz and funk into his music, this created his new sound. This new sound would be used for the song “What’s Going On” released in 1971 and future songs to come. It sounded as if it was more “relaxing” or “soothing” in my opinion, I just start to feel it more than his earlier work. It sounds if he started to pour is heart out into his music. The biggest influence for the album would have to be his brother Frankie’s stories of the war in Vietnam but this still would’ve have been the same without  the help of Renaldo Benson. This is who gave the idea to Marvin Gaye. When the song was ready to be released it faced a few obstacles that kind’ve held up the process. One of those which was Barry Gordy, his wife’s brother, who said it was the worst thing he’s ever heard. Gordy refused to release the song in fear that it would hurt Marvin Gaye’s reputation. This album was set apart by other soul recordings at the time because of the fact that it was influenced by powerful events. Most of the other songs of the time were love songs of some sort or something along the mainstream lines.

The GRAMMY Awards

Part 1:

The genre I have chosen is Pop music. The genre has went through some changes throughout the years, for one example of changes occurred in the 60’s. Throughout this whole decade they called the sub-genres for pop “Contemporary…” which means to occur or belong in present time. I believe that Joe Jackson may have created the sub-genre Pop Instrumental Album in 2000 and which is a very popular category to this day. There are many artists that have their artwork nominated for this sub-genre in Pop. Even though there have been great performers throughout all genres of music since the very beginning of it, I think we all can agree a little when I say that Adele has risen to the top of that list. I do not believe that it was he specific style that created the sub-genre but let alone her raw talent. Overall the sub-genres haven’t gone through that many changes and they don’t seem to be too much different then the one in the earlier years. They all seem to be quite similar actually just a word is added or taken away to change it. Maybe the labeled one as an album versus a single or one sub-genre was a solo performance while the other was a duet or even a group.


Part 2:

Quincy Jones worked on multiple of Michael Jackson’s songs that were award winners such as: Beat It, Thriller (Both in 1983), and then We Are the World (1985). David Foster was awarded producer of the year two times, once in 1991 and another time in 1993. I feel like “winners” of anything are a great influence. Especially when it’s in your industry, the artist or producer that achieves the awarded most likely is going to have followers of some sort. Weather they want to copy the style completely, which happens more than less sadly, or just uses his winning experience to push them to create something great for themselves. Winners impact others by creating the desire for them to want to be in their spot. This creates some kind of competition. I feel that maybe Quincy Jones should have won an award in 1979, just because of the fact that he is a great artist/producer and one more grammy seems to hurt.