It’s hard enough to gauge future music trends in the short term, let alone have any clue what’s going to be happening in the year 3000.
But what’s abundantly clear given human nature, something resembling music will still play a part in our lives. Just how the original Star Trek tried to look way into the future but also just kinda looked like the 60s because that’s when they filmed it, Complex Canada’s attempt to peer into the year 3000 will invariably look like a souped up version of today. It’s all human imagination will allow.
Here’s Complex Canada's attempt to gaze into the crystal ball about what Canadian music will sound like in the year 3000.
Artificial Intelligence Will Be An Instrument
You can argue it already is. Today, musicians and listeners are still approaching AI in music with an understandable amount of skepticism: like the recent controversy surrounding Ghostwriter’s AI track “Heart on My Sleeve” that brings Drake and The Weeknd back together virtually. In the future, AI will be seamlessly integrated into the songwriting process in a way that only boosts the flesh and bone creators. Or at least we hope.
As long as there’s a real person at the other end listening to the final result, we’ll never fully connect with a piece of AI music without any human creativity behind it. We listen to music to feel something, and AI will always come up short in that department. But artists have been harnessing technology from the beginning, from an immaculately designed Stradivarius, to samples and software. It’ll take talent to make AI music that’s more than just a curiosity, but people are already doing it, with more to come. Canadian artist Grimes opened up her voice to potential AI collabs, and undoubtedly there are creative people coming up with cool uses for it.
Imagine symphonies with real and AI musicians. Or freestyle battles where AI is switching the beats up in ways no human can predict? Or maybe it’s just a well-produced track with some layers of AI refining the process under the supervision of a Timbaland? Art needs humans to be real, as creators and consumers, but the tools of the trade never stop evolving.
ASMR in Overdrive
You could argue ASMR has always existed in music in some capacity, even if YouTube and social media gave rise to the phenomenon. Either way, it feels like we’ve only scratched the surface of sounds that can elicit a physical response in people.
A pop track could have a bunch of titillating sounds just below the surface, or music itself could just become a series of arthyhmic stimuli designed to make your head spin. It’s a neat trick, to record something that people can listen to any time and have the hairs stand up without any in-person interaction involved. It just seems like there’s more of that to come somehow, especially as we rely more on screens to satisfy our artistic needs.
Who Needs Computers? Just Think Your Next Track
At some point, man and machine will probably become one anyway and the need for instruments, studios, or even recording devices will be moot.
Sometimes your best ideas come in the shower—imagine being able to save your thoughts as they happen, then send that million dollar idea to some sort of cloud where you can grab it later. Instead of inputting your songwriting and production tweaks afterwards, your brain does all the communicating, and when your perfect track is done, you can link with other people’s brains and they can hear the song exactly as you intended.
Hopefully this isn't a twisted experiment that goes awry and our brains turn to mush, but rather the real deal of humanity being able to share brain waves. Maybe we’re getting a little too sci-fi here, but some of us still remember when email and portable phones seemed pretty far out.
If humanity wants to reach the year 3000, we’ll need to do a better job of protecting the environment. Travel is a dirty business, and already we’re seeing touring bands contemplate their carbon footprint when hitting the road.
In the future, that’ll all change with the development of teleportation. An artist could perform in Halifax and be home in Vancouver by sundown. Not only will teleporting be a cleaner way to travel, it will also open up the possibilities of where you can do shows, and with who. Right now, Drake is on his It’s All A Blur tour and bringing out special guests every night. He can do it on his budget, but imagine how much easier it would be to get your pals on stage if they can warp speed travel to wherever you are at the drop of a hat? Or what about instead of going from city to city, an artist can build one stage on top of a mountain or in a desert oasis, and ticket buyers can transport themselves halfway across the world to see the show? The possibilities are endless.
The Canadian Sound in the Year 3000
Nations themselves probably won’t exist that far into the future, but there will always be intrigue surrounding the culture of Canada. In the way stereotypes develop over time—like beavers and hockey players—down the line, historians will look back at today’s Canada and think we all dressed, acted, and sounded like Drake and The Weeknd, just because of how ubquitious they were.
So in the year 3000, people will still do it, but in a winking sort of way. Kids will use technology to mashup Drake’s entire oeuvre into one track, sort of like a greatest hits album, but even shorter because they'll be able to process info so much faster. Besides, there’ll be so much music by then, they won’t have hours to spend listening to back catalogues.
And with holograms being as common as a neon sign today, any artist from yesteryear can be brought back at any social function in the year 3000. No trend will ever really die in the future, they'll just keep coming back in different forms.