Album:America - Muzak

Idaho / Aug. 17, 2012 / by Chris

Music is everywhere around us. It's really inescapable - even if you try to get yourself away from it, your brain will just bring up something you've heard earlier (most likely something you would not have chosen if your head were an iPod). But there is one type of music that we hear all the time, most likely every time we go out in public. Some people call it elevator music; I prefer the slightly odder, yet surprisingly descriptive name: Muzak.

The term was supposedly coined in the 1920s by the first company to develop a system for businesses and workplaces to pipe-in background music. The idea was to create music that subconsciously encouraged customers to spend longer in a store, while simultaneously avoiding the distractions of broadcast radio like lyrics and commercials. But the term has come to describe a stereotypical type of music with cheesy instrumentation, cyclical melodies, and "easy listening" vibes. So this week I've arranged a few tunes you might recognize into tunes you might hear in the elevator. Well, a very classy elevator at least.

We want to give a big 'thank you' to the Idaho Falls Arts Council and the Willard Theater for letting us film in their lobby and elevator. While my Bus 52 acting debut might make it clear why I stay on the other side of the camera, their beautiful facility makes this video look good.