43 minutes | Jun 29, 2021

That Seattle Muzak Sound

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On this episode, we explore the misunderstood history of Muzak, formerly the world’s foremost producers of elevator music. Out of the technological innovations of World War I, Muzak emerged as one of the most significant musical institutions of the 20th century, only to become a punching bag as the 1960’s began to turn public perceptions of popular music on its head. By the 80’s and 90’s, Muzak was still the butt of jokes, and was trying to figure out a new direction as they happened to employ many players in Seattle's burgeoning grunge scene. This is the story of how different ideas about pop music butted heads throughout the 20th century, including inside Muzak’s offices. 

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