Technology for Music Therapists: Creating Popular Music Mash-Ups

By Rebecca Vaudreuil, MT-BC, Neurologic Music Therapist

Popular music is something that goes hand in hand with technology. As technology continues to advance, so do the types of music that are created in music software programs. Client-preferred music and specific sounds are no longer able to be entirely replicated by live instruments played by music therapists. A new wave in popular music is called music mash-ups or meshes, which blend different songs, genres and artists. They are created by blending two or more pre-recorded songs, by either overlaying the vocal track of one song seamlessly over the instrumental track of another, or blending different segments of songs flawlessly into one another, creating a sequence customized by the client. Such works can be completely transformative of the original content when facilitated properly by a music therapist. Utilizing executive functioning, clients select the repertoire of songs to combine based on examining the musical components of sound such as time, tempo, duration, pitch, timbre, and rhythmic patterns. Once the mash-up is complete, clients can give credit to the artists of the songs that they use in the mash-up by making a video in iMovie.

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