Did 2018 hit the right notes? | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 31, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 02:58 PM, December 31, 2018

Did 2018 hit the right notes?

It is hard to argue the fact that 2018 was an eventful year in Bangladeshi music. Whether it be the end of a musical saga, or a stark change in consumption trends, there was a lot that indicated where the future may lie for an industry that is slowly recuperating from the dark days of mass piracy.

A GRADUAL SHIFT TOWARDS AUDIO STREAMING

The biggest attempt of shift is the renewed investment in music streaming platforms. GP Music, which had been revamped in late 2016, stayed relevant this year with consistent curation and serviceability. Banglalink Vibe was relaunched this year with a plethora of exclusives from some of the biggest names in the industry. However, the problem of accessibility persists, as the user needs to possess a SIM from the respective telecom company. GAAN and Imagine Radio are two apps that look to mitigate the issue, with the latter being recently launched with endorsement from the biggest artistes of the music industry. Even though the effectiveness of these apps in battling piracy is up for debate, a lot of new artistes getting a shot at the limelight through them certainly isn't a bad thing.

MUSIC FOR A CAUSE

In October, BAMBA teamed up with PFDA-Vocational Training Centreto raise awareness about autism. The cause brought together fans and musicians alike with a massive turnout, even amidst an important cricket match for Bangladesh's national team. Warfaze, one of the country's biggest rock bands, signed with UNICEF as 'Advocate for Child Rights'. The power of music, when harnessed, can work to bring people together for a good cause, and 2018 contained some remarkable examples of that.

MUSICIANS, NOT 'HANDS'

'Bangladesh Drum Day', organised by Stargazer, had one of the highest turnouts in the home of rock, the Russian Cultural Centre. The event, besides highlighting the best drummers from the country, was testament to the fact that the days of glorifying only vocalists is gradually coming to an end.

'VIRAL FEVER' ENSUES, ARTISTES BREAK THROUGH

While it would be wrong to imply that breaking out as an artiste on social media is a new phenomenon, this year saw a surprising number of talented artistes come to the forefront. Whether it be covers which would revive the olden days or songs of heartbreak that spreads like wildfire, it is inarguable that social media had a huge role to play in the industry.

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