It occurs to me I have no idea what music is popular anymore. This has been a journey, of sorts, starting maybe ten or fifteen years ago, when I began exploring progressive rock and experimental music. I found a satisfaction in the sound, and at the same time it opened up a doorway to more. I enjoyed learning that this genre, which I had enjoyed quietly — privately — as a youth, actually had a name and a bit of a subculture and fanbase. And in this age of streaming services and YouTube and their ilk, not to mention a frighteningly growing artificial intelligence, you can queue algorithmically recommended songs similar to what you're listening to on an ever twisting and turning rabbit hole extending out into eternity.
So I wonder if anyone else is going down this path, this winding path, out there. Or some similar path... regardless of the genre, or even the subject matter. There's enough intelligence on the web now that it can pretty accurately recommend what you might like next. And I'm not talking about the people on the internet... Jesus H. God, no. I'm talking about the stuff... the information. Do you like anything at all? Any particular kind of book, movie, music, media, artform, topic? Jump in anywhere, see you in a decade or two. It's all out there.
And as we each get further down our own pathways, maybe despite how this may seem to expand our views, it could be doing the opposite by sending each of us down seven and a half billion unique rabbit holes, wending further and further away from the so-called mainstream. And then there is no more mainstream, and no way to get back to it or to any other pathway. Just each of us in our own private Idaho, advancing to the next turn in the road.
This isn't a bad thing necessarily, but for those who champion the internet as a great equalizer, it may be worth considering that your head is down a rabbit hole somewhere too. It may be worth asking which one, and whether or not it's keeping you from looking around once in awhile at other things.