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Electronic Dance Music: About

Electronic Music History

Electronic Dance Music Defined

Electronic Dance Music is a compilation of electronic music subgenres that are intended for crowds of dancers, including disco music, synthpop, techo, house music, trance music, drum and bass, dubstep, trap, hardstyle and more. With such a wide range of sounds, it would seem impossible that all of this could, at the same time, be classified as EDM, but these subgenres have developed over the course of the last few decades, informing and transforming out of a progressive dance culture. When you hear EDM today, it’s a much different experience than what listeners of electronic dance music would have heard in the 1970’s, ’80’s, ‘90’s, or even early 2000’s, and its progression as a recognizable genre can be mapped out by understanding when its subgenres were popularized as forms of dance music. Continue reading from The Los Angeles Film School

Techno is electronic dance music that began in the United States in the 1980s and became globally popular in the 1990s. With its glacial synthesizer melodies and brisk machine rhythms, techno was a product of the fascination of middle-class African-American youths in Detroit, Michigan, for European electronic dance music. Influenced by Kraftwerk’s Teutonic electro-pop and Alvin Toffler’s concept of “techno rebels,” a clique of deejay-producers—Derrick May, Juan Atkins, and Kevin Saunderson—began drawing attention to their innovative music in 1985. Crossing the Atlantic as an adjunct to Chicago house music, their early tracks—Rythim Is Rythim’s “Strings of Life,” Model 500’s “No UFOs,” and Inner City’s “Good Life”—incited pandemonium on Europe’s dance floors. Unlike house, Detroit techno was primarily all-instrumental, and its beats were more complex than the disco-derived, four-to-the-floor kick-drum that underpinned house.  Continue reading from Encyclopedia Britannica


Watch EDM History

Frankie Knuckles NYC Boiler Room Set, 2013


Skrillex at Ulta Music Festival, 2015


Mira playing at Mayan Warrior x Robot Heart Link Up, Burning Man 2019

Delve Deeper into Electronic Music History

Link to The History of Disco Resource Guide
Link to The Birth of House Music Resource Guide
Link to The History of Dubstep Resource Guide

From Our Collection

Link to Blue: The Color of Noise by Steve Aoki in the Catalog
Link to The Song of the Machine: From Disco to DJs to Techno by Dave Blot in the Catalog
Link to Electric Daisy Carnival Experience produced by Insomniac in Hoopla
Link to Into the Sun by Bassnectar on Hoopla
Link to Inside Studio 54 by Mark Fleischman in the Catalog
Link to While(1<2) by Deadmau5 in Hoopla
Link to Disco: Spinning The Story produced by Mark McLaughlin in Hoopla
Link to Stories by Avicii in Hoopla

Link to History of Music Resource Guide Series