What is Muzak Really?

“Are We Sleeping On It Or Is It Putting Us To Sleep?


Artist AOTQ

For those of you who may not know, muzak is that quiet, jazzy music you hear on an elevator, or while you are waiting for *insert a problematic company here* to be with you shortly so stay on the line. Songs like the Mr. Lucky Theme Song. At least that is what I thought it was. I have always found muzak to be interesting. Mostly because it is one of those things that is there, but you don’t even realize it.

What I found out was that muzak isn’t JUST elevator music like I had thought. Just like any other style of music, it has evolved. It has moved beyond boring elevator jazz. Today it has become its own genre. It may surprise you how much muzak can make appearances in your daily life. 

Video games. While you are building civilizations or shooting zombies, the music playing in the background is actually muzak. If you are an anime lover, the dramatic music you hear when she is just about to confess her feelings for him or the nine-tailed fox is just about to attack the village is also muzak.

Muzak is even more than that though. It is also its own genre of music. Just like rap or pop it is another type of music. It has grown to be made just to listen to in the car or while you are trying to do your homework. It is, in a sense, the background music for your life.

I decided to investigate the depth of muzak’s evolution. You can find it on Spotify and there are quite a few artists with their own spin on muzak. Some sound like lo-fi while others sound more like jazz. It all depends on the artist and the audience. 

I found an artist named AOTQ who has some pretty cool stuff. I recommend you check it out. My personal favorite of theirs is “Air_Conditioner” 🙂 I also like The New Edition a lot. They have a song called “Arthur’s Theme” that is pretty good.

Anyway, the final point I want to make is that muzak can be anything. Your favorite artist could be “making” muzak. Any time you hear music in the background of anything; a store, a movie, tv show etc., you are listening to muzak. The next time you go to Harris Teeter and you hear Lights by Ellie Goulding just know that TECHNICALLY you are listening to muzak.