Technology and Trenton Makes Music

Technology has almost always been in the forefront of humanity for the past few decades, transforming every industry imaginable. In the context of the musical industry, it has revolutionized nearly every nook and cranny, ranging from the invention of the electrical guitar, to the global sharing of music, and to create songs without ever touching an instrument.

Music has always been part of mankind, symbolizing all sorts of occasions from the most jovial unions to the most dire strife. While the benefit of technology has aided several musicians around the globe, it has left others in the dust, unwilling or even unable to adapt to the revolving world of the digital age. New Jersey’s own Trenton has made some stake in this new realm of music, but though the capital city has produced some known artists, many don’t think of the struggling capital when they think of the music.

Trenton Makes Music aims to fix that. With the increase of new technology, people don’t need to go to their local concert halls when they could listen to their favorite tracks on the radio or Spotify.

“Why bother listening to stuff from [Trenton] when you can just plug in your phone to Spotify or another music app?” George Guadron, a student attending The College of New Jersey with a musical background from Trenton, said, “I’ve never heard of [Sarah Dash]. All you hear these days is Kanye and Drake. Nothing really local.”

With the advent of these programs like Spotify, Pandora, Grooveshark, it gets increasingly more difficult to find cultural, local music. What you can find online through these sites overshadows the local competition. If you don’t go global, you don’t go at all.

“It’s really a shame,” Guadron said in an interview, “I don’t even like Kanye or Drake. Trenton has some real talent that I’m just not hearing anymore because I can’t find it at all.”

When told that Trenton stars like Nona Hendryx used their community to become popular, Guadron was surprised, stating that “Why don’t we have more of that? Every city has a special culture in its peoples’ hearts. Why does everyone try to ignore that and go big?”

In a society like this, in order to get recognized in the vastly saturated market of music, you need to have experience and global significance. That’s difficult to come by. Several artists try to make their mark in the realm, but fall short.

Guadron is behind the idea of the Trenton Makes Music concept. The project aims to collect and recount the musical history of Trenton and provide useful resources for educators, students, and musicians alike. For someone like Guadron, he said he was interested in seeing what talent that he’d been missing on all these years for inspiration.

“I play guitar, you see,” he said, “I’m sure a lot of the artists that came here did too. I never took classes or anything. It was all hobby. I never went to the music ed classes so I didn’t learn what the others learned.”

For a hobbyist, Guadron never had the opportunity to pursue a further career in the musical industry, but rather continues his pursuit of a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at The College of New Jersey. He stated that he is interested in the development of the Trenton Makes Music project.

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