Music Education

My Ideal Playlist Length

Playlists are a very subjective form of media consumption that don’t just depend on an individual users’ music tastes but their listening habits as well. Often people create playlists for individual artists where 25-40 songs tend to be the sweet spot, or specific moods where it wouldn’t make sense to go over 50 songs. I won’t even attempt to generalize a universal, be all end all playlist length but rather talk about the one that works best for me.

I tend to use playlists as massive canvases for entire genres, dumping lots of songs into one place and then either scrolling through to find the exact one or just shuffling all of them and seeing what comes out. This means that all my playlists tend to number in the hundreds of songs, but within those there is still a good amount of variance. My indie rock playlist is pushing 500 songs and my electronic playlist is over 300, which is great for collecting any song I would ever want to listen to in one place, but can definitely be annoying to determine which songs truly belong and which I just added on a whim and skip every time I hear them.

I like to aim for a mix of having enough songs where it doesn’t feel stale but every song that comes on shuffle play still feels like the right song for that exact moment. This is a tricky balance to aim for, and I think I’ve cracked the code best with Lobster Queen, my vibey and genreless playlist that at time of writing is sitting at 156 songs. I wouldn’t describe this as an ideal length, there’s definitely work to be done, but this at least feels like a good ballpark figure where I’ll often find the exact song I was wishing for to appear on shuffle play as if I had summoned it while still acting as a good repository. I’ve been adding a lot of songs to it recently and I don’t plan on stopping, but I feel like I want to end up sitting at the 200 song marker, which seems like a nice middle ground for everything I want to get out of it.

I’m continually fascinated by playlists not just as collections of songs, but as their own unique art form. There’s so much to talk about and nerd out over, and the virality of Spotify Wrapped along with our passionate reactions to it shows how much the consumption of music has grown from a shelf of records to a topic of discussion of its own. And as a form of escapism, having lists of songs to endlessly tinker with and find the exact arrangement that works just can’t be beat. It’s so fun that you almost don’t even have to listen to the music itself. Almost.


Blog Miscellaneous Music Education

The Power of the Playlist

I’ve been doing some spring cleaning this October, and have been reorganizing the way I listen to my Apple Music library. And it hit me that the way I, and most people my age, organize songs into a genre or mood based playlist that we can carry around in our pockets would not have been possible 15 years ago. Playlists as not just a way of listening but as an art form are so ubiquitous now that they’re just a fact of life, a noun that we all use. Both Google search trends and mentions of the word in books actually peaked in the late 2000s to early 2010s, right around the time Spotify was really entering the public consciousness. So despite the fact that we’re using playlists more than ever, we think about the fact that we use them less, you just throw one together without considering what the alternative might be.

This massive trend has completely reshaped how the music industry presents itself to the listener, with a varying degree of subtlety. The biggest albums of the year now see a 20+ song tracklist as a bare minimum, with more songs meaning a guaranteed increase in streams regardless of the average quality of the record. Even with records that stay around my personal sweet spot of 10-15 songs, I find myself listening through once, seeing which songs really stand  out to me, and then extracting those to a playlist whose theme fits the music of that artist, something I explored as well in my review of latest album by TORRES.

This approach to listening to music has its pros and cons. For one, I don’t really get a chance to have an album and all of its quirks really grow on me unless it’s already an album I really liked being revisited and becoming an album I love. “Suck It And See” from Arctic Monkeys is an album that transcended the way I’ll often leave the album behind; it went from being a cover I would see when the few songs I had from it played off my Arctic Monkeys playlist to being one of my favorites of the last decade. But the reason I went back and got to connect with the album is because Arctic Monkeys have been my favorite artist since sophomore year of high school, and I can only imagine how many albums that, had I been willing to give them another chance, would have become an integral part of my memories the way my favorite albums have.

On the flip side, I find playlists make for a more consistent listening experience on a day to day basis, especially when I just want to get something done and music isn’t my main focus at the time. Very few albums have zero filler, but all those hours spent perfectly sculpting a playlist late at night pay off when you’re doing homework and don’t need to switch through five windows to find the music player to skip a mediocre track. Your personal playlist is ideally nothing but battle-tested songs that will always come through. There’s a level of artistry involved too; building smaller playlists and carefully choosing which songs make the cut lets me engage with music in a way I wouldn’t be able to otherwise.

Playlists have also become a way of discovering music that’s very interesting to think about. Discover Weekly on Spotify is a lot of people’s go to for finding new songs they would probably like, but all streaming services have pre-made playlists that fit specific moods to draw from as well. Finding new music has less of a barrier in front of it than ever before, a new song is no longer an individual financial investment, like buying a record or downloading an individual iTunes track. On the contrary, if you’re paying for Spotify Premium, you want to get the most out of your monthly subscription and listen to as much as possible.

Being able to look at a homepage of a streaming service and seeing an algorithmically curated “for you” section in some ways lets individual listeners have more power over how they listen to music, but in other ways little has changed from when record companies started to dominate the industry. Algorithmically generated is key here, platforms can get you listening to a lot of music in a very narrow breadth within a wider genre or subgenre without ever having to leave one’s auditory comfort zone. Also many of those genre playlists on Spotify have their slots bought and paid for by record companies to promote their new material anyways, making music discovery in some ways no more organic than in the past, just with a new coat of paint.

Pros and cons aside, playlists aren’t going anywhere. Spotify has more than 30 million new listeners worldwide since 2020 and it’s not alone in this wider industry trend. As someone who grew up in the streaming era, I’ve never known life without them and I’m always looking for the next song to really tie the whole playlist together. I just have to make sure I know why my listening habits are the way they are, and to never listen to an album on shuffle.


Music Education

Soundtrack to a Revolution: My Pick for the Perfect Protest Song

Protest in Raleigh
Women’s March for Abortion Rights in Raleigh – photo by Erie Mitchell

Going to the women’s march for abortion rights in Raleigh recently was a big moment for me because was my first protest since the pandemic started, but during it my thoughts briefly wandered to something else. During a quiet moment between speakers I noticed they were playing “Scoop” by Lil Nas X. Now this is a great song, and it got the crowd going, but it got me wondering if we could do better.

There are songs (some of which were already mentioned) that instantly come to mind when you think of a protest: “Alright” by Kendrick Lamar was the rallying cry against police brutality, Gil Scott Heron created a phrase as relevant today as in 1971 with “The Revolution Will Not be Televised”, and Rage Against the Machine built an entire career around punchy, stick-it-to-the-man anthems like “Killing in the Name”. All of these are classics that have inspired millions and work because of their purposeful simplicity and universality as well as their strong musical fundamentals , but I feel like the best protest song is something that isn’t known for being played on the picket line. The best listen of a song is the first one, and I know I would be just a little more fired up if it was an unexpected song.

This brings me back to “Scoop”. Again, it’s a great song and has the energy level that aligns with a massive demonstration, but lyrically it’s about fame, sex, and looking really good; all fine things to make a song about of course, but maybe not one challenging Texas abortion law. Scoop is worth discussing here because of one important aspect: the context. Lil Nas X has become such a counterculture icon that he’s shifted culture itself, conversely every song and video he releases is accompanied by, let’s say discourse, on Twitter. Everything about him is rebellious, and this is the kind of artist I would want my dream protest song to be by.

Which brings me to what my dream protest song actually is: “Generational Synthetic” by Beach Fossils. From a strictly musical perspective (I think it’s important for a protest song to be a good song in its own right) it’s a great song that starts with a killer groove and doesn’t stop that groove, and it’s just low-fi enough to blend with the chanting of a crowd and have the voices not feel completely distinct. Thematically it deals with coming into one’s own and growing along the way with clever turns of phrase, “all your working inspiration // systematic exploration” is heady without sounding pretentious. And the chorus strips all of that away to create a universality that, like Kendrick’s anthem “Alright”, lets it be extracted from the song and become a rallying cry for the voiceless all on its own. 

Lo-fi indie pop band Beach Fossils aren’t exactly an artist that screams protest, but there are some important notes I thought made this selection work. Their most recent album and interviews from lead singer Dustin Payseur about their upcoming project have shown a genre bending willingness and a specific focus on jazz that lends itself to going against the grain, and their videos especially draw from countercultural iconography with depictions of skateboarding and graffiti. One of the founding members left to become a Buddhist monk, so these aren’t a group of people who are sellouts. And the fact that this just feels like a weird choice is an asset because it doesn’t at all feel cliche.

Perhaps the most important aspect, though, is the scale of the lyricism. It’s not too long and wordy, which I think would get in a song’s way here, but also comes with a certain melancholic spirit, with a Payseur tapping into a weight of depicting an entire generation’s trials and tribulations that captures the essence of what a protest is in just a few lines.

This is just my personal pick of course, and there’s too much music out there to have a definitive answer. Mine might change tomorrow, but for now, “Generational Synthetic” is what I’m queuing up when I head to the next rally.


Music Education

Planning a Long Set – What I Learned

A snapshot of my set on 10/1/2021

World College Radio Day was one of the craziest days of my life, and it came on the heels of a fever pitch of excitement at the station. Never have I been so excited about a holiday I had only heard of a week before it happened.

And in the midst of the hype, I decided to make a 5 hour set focused around dark techno and midtempo, which are genres I’m not exactly an expert in. Here are a few things I learned along the way for anyone who finds their set length exceeding the runtime of “Avengers: Endgame”. This is one for all the DJs out there.

  • Focus on the big picture. Have a set theme going into it, and having different subgenres within your overall set description. This is just personal preference, but you really don’t want to stick to one very specific niche for more than a few hours. If songs start to feel the same, you don’t want to be stuck having to play that same thing for an hour more than you want to. I wanted my theme to be a “descent into madness”, so I started with house music before going into techno and later into midtempo and dubstep, slowly getting darker while trying to make any given few songs feel like they should be in the same set.
  • Don’t worry about individual transitions that much, at least early on. 5 hours equated to around 90 songs for me, and that’s a lot to have to get in a hyper-specific order. Start by grouping songs into general categories like mood and tempo, which will narrow down the amount of ordering you have to do by a lot.
  • Don’t be afraid to throw in something off the wall. Putting a noise pop song by Black Dresses in the middle of a bunch of dubstep feels odd, but don’t sweat it. A change of pace after an hour of the same genre sounds a lot better than you might think.
  • Use your resources. In making this set I had to branch out a lot from my typical listening habits and ways of discovering music, Spotify radio stations of individual songs helped a lot with this. was also a great resource. This website lets you search an artist and showing a map of artists you’ll probably like if you like that artist, the closer together they are the more likely you’ll click with them. I came into this set liking Rezz a lot and wanted her style of midtempo music to be at least an hour of my set, so searching for Rezz on music-map let me find artists like Hlfmn and Whipped Cream whose songs became cornerstones of that time block.

And remember, don’t stress out too much. It might feel like a lot but doing a long set is about having fun and really getting to showcase a genre. If you’re genuinely enjoying the songs and how they’re flowing it’ll reflect in the end product. This is only my first set of this length and I definitely have a lot to learn, and that’s part of the fun of it, just scratching the surface of a new and exciting activity for me.


Blog Miscellaneous Music Education

Some of My Favorite Movie Soundtracks

I love movies. Who doesn’t? That being said, I took it so far that I’m now a film major, and I’m convinced I will make movies for the rest of my life. There’s an unbelievable amount of components and sheer work that go into creating a film, much less a good one, and one of those aspects is the soundtrack. Some films have songs made just for them and some curate from outside sources. Regardless, it’s usually very clear when soundtracks are good. Here are some of my favorites:

Good Will Hunting (1997)

1. “Between the Bars (Orchestral)” by Elliott Smith

2. “As the Rain” by Jeb Loy Nichols

3. “Angeles” by Elliott Smith

4. “No Name #3” by Elliott Smith

5. “Fisherman’s Blues” by The Waterboys

6. “Why Do I Lie?” by Luscious Jackson

7. “Will Hunting” (Main Titles)” by Danny Elfman

8. “Between the Bars” by Elliott Smith

9. “Say Yes” by Elliott Smith

10. “Baker Street” by Gerry Rafferty

11. “Somebody’s Baby by Andru Donalds

12. “Boys Better” by The Dandy Warhols

13. “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?” by Al Green

14. “Miss Misery” by Elliott Smith

15. “Weepy Donuts” by Danny Elfman

Pride & Prejudice (2005)
***Composed by Dario Marianelli and performed by Jean-Yves Thibaudet (piano) and the English Chamber Orchestra.***

  1. “Dawn”
  2. “Stars and Butterflies”
  3. “The Living Sculptures of Pemberley”
  4. “Meryton Townhall”
  5. “The Militia Marches In”
  6. “Georgiana”
  7. “Arrival At Netherfield”
  8. “A Postcard to Henry Purcell”
  9. “Liz on Top of the World”
  10. “Leaving Netherfield”
  11. “Another Dance”
  12. “The Secret Life of Daydreams”
  13. “Darcy’s Letter”
  14. “Can’t Slow Down”
  15. “Your Hands Are Cold”
  16. “Mrs. Darcy”
  17. “Credits”

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
***Composed by Tom Holkenborg a.k.a. Junkie XL.***

  1. “Survive”
  2. “Escape”
  3. “Immortan’s Citadel”
  4. “Blood Bag”
  5. “Spikey Cars”
  6. “Storm Is Coming”
  7. “We Are Not Things”
  8. “Water”
  9. “The Rig”
  10. “Brothers in Arms”
  11. “The Bog”
  12. “Redemption”
  13. “Many Mothers”
  14. “Claw Trucks”
  15. “Chapter Doof” (Extended Version)
  16. “My Name Is Max” (Extended Version)
  17. “Let Them Up”

Trainspotting (1996)

  1. “Lust for Life” by Iggy Pop
  2. “Deep Blue Day” by Brian Eno
  3. “Trainspotting” by Primal Scream
  4. “Atomic” by Sleeper 
  5. “Temptation” by New Order
  6. “Nightclubbing” by Iggy Pop
  7. “Sing” by Blur
  8. “Perfect Day” by Lou Reed
  9. “Mile End” by Pulp
  10. “For What You Dream Of” (Full On Renaissance Mix) by Bedrock featuring KYO
  11. “2:1” by Elastica
  12. “A Final Hit” by Leftfield
  13. “Born Slippy .NUXX” by Underworld
  14. “Closet Romantic” by Damon Albarn

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
***All tracks performed by Prague Philharmonic Orchestra.***

  1. “Also Sprach Zarathustra” by Richard Strauss
  2. “Spartacus-Main Title” by Alex North
  3. “Ode to Joy” by Ludwig van Beethoven
  4. “Women of Ireland” by Traditional
  5. “Sarabande”
  6. “Full Metal Jacket-Themes” by Abigail Mead
  7. “Surfin’ Bird” by Bob Harris (Performance feat. The Trashmen”
  8. “Main Title/The Robbery” by Gerald Fried
  9. “Murder ‘Mongst the Mannikins” by Gerald Fried
  10. “A Meditation on War” by Gerald Fried
  11. “Madness” by Gerald Fried
  12. “The Patrol” by Gerald Fried
  13. “March of the Gloved Gladiators” by Gerald Fried
  14. “The Shinning-Theme” by Wendy Carlos / Rachel Elkind
  15. “Midnight, the Stars and You (The Shining Blue Star)” (Performance feat. Al Bowlly
  16. “Lolita-Love Theme” Bob Harris
  17. “On the Beautiful Blue Danube”
  18. “The Bomb Run” by Laurie Johnson
  19. “We’ll Meet Again” by Hughie Charles / Ross Parker (Performance feat. Vera Lynn)

Here’s to music in movies (just not musicals),

Silya Bennai

Blog Miscellaneous Music Education Playlists

Oh, To Be At A Party

Parties. There’s nothing else like them. After a long week of classes, work, and stress, dancing and talking without having to put in much effort is a welcomed experience. Beyond the space, people, drinks, and lighting, one of the most important aspects of a party is the music.

I don’t claim to know how to make the perfect party playlist, but I do have a few ideas. First, make it collaborative. When there’s multiple people contributing to the playlist, you’re almost guaranteed that there’s going to be enough variety to satisfy everyone at the party at some point or another. Second, a good mix of electronic, grunge, throwback, and joke songs (that aren’t really joke songs because everyone loves them) makes for a great time. Finally, I’d recommend keeping the music loud enough that you can’t make out anyone’s conversation but your own, but quiet enough that you don’t get a noise complaint.

For some party playlist ideas, check out my playlist below (inspired by a real collaborative party playlist I recently made with some friends):

  1. “Bicep” by TR/ST
  2. “A.M. 180” by Grandaddy
  3. “Opus3” by dapurr, The Hellp
  4. “The Book Lovers” by Broadcast
  5. “Celestica” by Crystal Castles
  6. “Tu Tu Neurotic” by The Hellp
  7. “Rapp Snitch Knishes” by MF DOOM, Mr Fantastik
  8. “PHONKY TOWN” by PlayaPhonk
  9. “Miss Camaraderie” by Azealia Banks
  10. “Motion” by Boy Harsher
  11. “999” by PlayaPhonk
  12. “Go2DaMoon” by Playboi Carti, Kanye West
  13. “Linger” by The Cranberries
  14. “Idioteque” by Radiohead
  15. “What’s Important” by Beat Happening
  16. “Disparate Youth” by Santigold
  17. “Lake of Fire” by Meat Puppets
  18. “Hunker Down” by Corbin
  19. “EAST” by Earl Sweatshirt
  20. “Brick” by Alex G
  21. “Going Deeper” by Tree Threes
  22. “Melaleuca” by Yu Su
  23. “Call For Help” by Pearly Drops
  24. “Can You Feel It” by Mr. Fingers
  25. “vs Reality” by AYA GLOOMY
  26. “DotA” by Basshunter
  27. “Making Up” by Dead Mellotron

Click here to listen to the playlist on Spotify.

Here’s to Emma, Molly, and Gabe for their epic contributions,

Silya Bennai

Music Education

From Classical to Expirimental – Going Mainstream

This is the last part of a four-part series on the birth of avant-garde music. You can read this article alone or view part one here.

When we last left off, the modern experimental ethos had developed in classical spaces. But there’s still a missing connection. How do we go from this academic music to the experimental musicians of today? Well, the answer has to do with a few musicians who made the jump from one genre to another, but first, we need to talk about money.

Music Education

Things Get Weird- Classical to Experimental Pt.3

This is part three of a series on the birth of avant-garde music. You can read this article alone or view part one here.

Last time we covered some music that wasn’t very good, this week we’re going one further to discuss some music that isn’t very music. Yup, in the 1940s and 50s classical music lost its mind and the boundary between high art and experimental was all but erased. Hope you like four minutes of utter silence and naked people playing the cello with guitar picks, because it’s time to talk about John Cage and Fluxus.

So, my main criticism of modernism was that it didn’t untether itself fully from the classical tradition. This was a fairly common criticism, especially as early modernists like Schoenberg who retained some sense of harmony gave way to incredibly complex, mathematical composition methods like Stochastic Music and Markov Chains. Classical music was rapidly turning into a race to the bottom for who could create the most mathematically intricate yet aesthetically bankrupt composition method. A change was sorely needed.

Miscellaneous Music Education

How to Find New Music

Sometimes, I get in a rut and feel like I’m tired of all of the music I like. I know I’m not alone in this, so I’m going to share with you all of the different methods and mediums I use to find new music.

ONLINE is compatible with most streaming services and can keep track of all of your streams (or as they call them, “scrobbles”) across platforms.

The platform is pretty much designed to recommend different artists and bands to you. The home page suggests artists similar to the ones you listen to, and will even recommend specific tracks for you to listen to.

There are dozens of ways to find new music on, and I often use it as a tool to build sonically coherent sets as a DJ for WKNC.

CONS: The mobile app is glitchy and is not robust like the site is, however the site is compatible on mobile devices, so I would recommend just using the site rather than the app.


Spotify also is constantly recommending music to you. Whether it be via playlists like “Discover Weekly,” “Daily Mixes,” artist/song radios or genre-specific mixes, Spotify definitely leans heavily into recommending music to it’s users.

Even when making playlists, Spotify will recommend songs for you to add, based on the general vibe of the playlist you’ve set so far.

CONS: The algorithm can and will recommend a lot of the same songs over and over again. There have been many people online who note that Spotify recommends “So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings” by Carolina Polacheck over and over again.


There are a bunch of subreddits for specific genres, artists/bands, it’s just a matter of finding the right ones. This platform requires more digging than the previous two, but if you find groups that pique your musical interests, you should join them.

CONS: It takes some pretty active searching for subreddits that align with what you’re looking for.


At WKNC we pride ourselves on playing a variety of different music. If you like indie, rock, electronic, hip-hop, R&B and/or local music, then you’re in luck. DJs and Music Directors work hard to provide the best of the best for our listeners. If you’re interested in finding out when your preferred genre(s) are playing, check out the HD-1 and HD-2 schedules. You can tune into HD-1 and HD-2 on our web-stream and the Radio-FX app. HD-1 is available on all FM radios within range, and HD-2 is accessible via HD radio. 


Ask your friends

People listen to a lot of different music. I have found numerous different artists, bands, and songs just by asking for recommendations from my friends.

Pay attention to soundtracks

There have been many times I’ve discovered a song because it was played in a movie or TV show. If there’s a song playing in the background that show you love and it actually kind of rocks, use Shazam to find out what song it is.

Live music

If there are venues by you that you know you love to go to, check out who’s playing there soon. Tickets for smaller artists are usually cheap, and you never know, they could be your next favorite band. If you don’t have the time, money, or energy to go to live-shows all the time you can use this tip as a search-engine of sorts. Find out who’s playing at your favorite venues, and then stream their stuff to see if you like it.

At the end of the day, music is everywhere, we just have to keep an eye out for it.

Until next time,


Music Education

Modernism: From Classical to Experimental

This is part two of a series on the birth of avant-garde music. You can read this article alone or view part one here.

Alright, so we spent part one introducing the topic, now it’s time to get into some specific music. Today we’re going to look at the earliest precursors to modern noise music: modernism. These composers still thought of themselves as part of the classical canon but listening to their music….well let’s just say it’s a little “out there.”

Modernism is a term used in art history a lot. Now I didn’t pay very much attention in high school English, and in visual art I have the taste of toddler, but Wikipedia confirms my vague recollection that modernists sought to replace old forms of art with newer and more exciting forms that reflected a modern, industrial world. This resulted in some notable artists like Pablo Picasso, Frank Lloyd Wright and Georgia O’Keeffe. In literature, this resulted in writers like Virginia Woolfe and James Joyce, who I’m sure some psychopathic English major actually enjoys.

So, with these beloved figures of art and literature attached to the word modernism, surely there are some fondly remembered musicians from this period? Well, no. Modernist music was roundly rejected by literally everyone. Audiences routinely rioted at modernist concerts and even through today no one actually likes it.


Okay, that might be a little harsh. A more accurate way to put it would be that audiences don’t really know what to do with modernist music. The composers associated with the era, Schoenberg, Stravinsky, Satie, Shostakovich, wrote very difficult music that eschewed tonality and easy-to-digest sounds, opting instead for novel forms of composition that pushed the boundaries of what music could be.

The result is that modernism is the oldest Western music that doesn’t feel like classical or folk music. It’s so unconventional that it just kinda sounds like, well, noise. Take Schoenberg for example. Schoenberg didn’t like classical harmony, and he wanted to write music that lacked a key and favored no particular note as a harmonic center. To accomplish this, he organized all 12 notes of the chromatic scale in a random order called a set, and then layered the different notes backward and forwards in different octaves and on different instruments to create something that could, arguably, be referred to as music. His masterpiece, the opera Moses und Aron, is absolutely terrifying, as exemplified by this production featuring an underwear Moses for some reason.

However, you would never really mistake Schoenberg for modern avant-garde music either. He still composed for orchestra, piano, and operatic voices, it still features conventionally defined notes, and there aren’t really any of the mechanical banging and scraping sounds that typify noise. It’s too rigid and formal to be genuinely fascinating, but too weird to be good on its own. This is what I mean when I say no one really likes modernism. Classical musicians end the common repertoire right before modernism, and experimental pop listeners don’t find it edgy or daring enough. Modernism, in my opinion, is best approached as a historical document, and a demonstration of how hard it is to push the envelope of music. When you’re steeped in a certain musical tradition, the boundaries of the system can start to feel natural, rather than limiting, and the formation of experimental music took genuine imagination and work. Your toddler might be able to make experimental music, but you might struggle.

The exceptions to this rule are Russolo and Satie, the only modernists who I can enthusiastically recommend. Luigi Russolo, who was associated with the Futurist movement in Italy, made straight-up noise music. Like it would sound completely normal released today—he just tried to impersonate the sounds of steel mills warming up. Futurists were not merely extending the classical cannon like Schoenberg; they were rebelling against it. Satie, by contrast, wrote tranquil piano music that sounds beautiful, but had such a simplistic and amateur quality that his music anticipates the ambient and minimalist movements of the 60s and 70s, which we will get into later. If you want to hear the very earliest inklings of musical rebellion, these are the two artists I would recommend.