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Music Genres of the Future – By Andrew Dana Hudson

This list of Music Genres of the Future is a part of the Weight of Light set of Project Activities.

Music can help us think about the future. Play around with these imaginary genres and styles. See if you can figure out what your favorites might sound like—or make up your own! Maybe you’ll invent the next big thing in the future of music!

Viral Sky Shanties: born out of the brief airship boom of the 2040s, these vocal social media collabs layered the deep voices of thousands of blimp-hands and their fans, celebrating the freedom and honest work of sailing the open skies.

Thawpop: tragic, entrancing, and catchy, these post-lofi earworms from Scandinavia mourn the melting of the arctic and tundra.

Xenoearth Ur-emo: How does one musically articulate the strangeness of living in the anthropocene? A collective of emo artists attempted to put these feelings into their music, birthing a new genre.

Algorock: rock music produced and written by artificial intelligence! It always sounds both familiar and off-kilter—and not robotic at all.

Thrash-cumbia: traditional Latin American folk dances reinterpreted by the Mexican speed-metal scene. 

Folk-trap deconstructives: drippy breakdowns of ancient folk songs stretched out over slow but danceable trap-beats.

Decolonial MIDI microtonality: MIDI 3 finally freed musicians working with computers from the Western 12 tone scale, allowing electronic music to explore diverse microtones inspired by indigenous cultures from around the world.

Bollaeton: a combination of Bollywood pop and Latin reggaeton, made possible by Fourth Wave Globalization.

Dragonjazz: Originally a joke, memes of cartoon dragons playing jazz and blues music inspired millions of breathy, sultry saxophone tracks, some of which became genuine classics.

Rap Pour la Révolution: the struggles of the Paris Commune of 2033 inspired countless French-language hip-hop songs celebrating “liberté, égalité, fraternité.”

Permiecountry: Country music about the permaculture movement created by a new generation of urban-to-rural migrants. Songs were used to spread gardening tips and soil-building best practices.

Submit your own musical genre of the future and we’ll consider adding it to the list! Instructions on how to do so are forthcoming!