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EDM: Electronic Dance Music. Surprisingly, the term is said to have been used as early as 1985, but really caught on as a way to describe the electronic sounds that have swept through America over the last few years. In the UK, it’s known as “dance music,” and if you ask any dance music fans about “EDM,” they will hit you with the puzzled face. With so many genres and sub-genres to remember, “EDM” seems to be the term that the American media have latched onto to properly explain the sounds that artists like David Guetta, Skrillex, Calvin Harris, and Afrojack provide to the multitude of fans out there.
What a difference a year makes. While 2012 wasn't the first year that EDM found its way into the mainstream, it's definitely the year that America realized how it could cash in dance music, which is already a global phenomenon. From the Billboard charts to the boardrooms, everyone was checking for EDM as the true "next big thing."
What exactly is EDM's place within the American mainstream, though? Where do the producers, DJs, and label heads see the genre going? What kind of impact will the commodification of dance music have on the music itself? Why are we asking so many questions?
It's hard NOT to ask questions. With the plays being made in Las Vegas, on terrestrial radio, and on the charts, 2013 is set to be a real make-or-break year for dance music on a commercial level in the U.S. We spoke with a number of key figures in the scene to get a grip on the state of EDM, who we should be keeping an ear out for, and, most importantly, where EDM will be going.