The state of contemporary music is dizzyingly diverse in terms of style, media, traditions, and techniques. How have trends in music developed over the past decades? Music Composition in the 21st Century is a guide for composers and students that helps them navigate the often daunting complexity and abundance of resources and influences that confront them as they work to achieve a personal expression.
From pop to classical, the book speaks to the creative ways that new composers mix and synthesize music, creating a music that exists along a more continuous spectrum rather than in a series of siloed practices. It pays special attention to a series of critical issues that have surfaced in recent years, including harmony, the influence of minimalism, the impact of technology, strategies of "openness," sound art, collaboration, and improvisation. Robert Carl identifies an emerging common practice that allows creators to make more informed aesthetic and technical decisions and also fosters an inherently positive approach to new methods.