Well, it was shunned at one point, anyway. Visions abounded of people in capes dancing to pan flutes on the beach at dawn, worshiping Babylonian sun gods, and that prejudiced image-conscious people against the genre. Cult-like stuff that feels a bit icky; the long hangover of the sixties, basically. Along with the freeing of the Western mind came a rejection of standard thought, and a lot of totally crazy as well as good ideas came from that. Musically, New Age started as sort of proto-ambient, instrumental music aimed at the spiritual, nature-loving side of the hippie movement. While ambient was cooler and edgier at times, New Age is more melodic, sunnier and optimistic, which means that it often strays well into the land of smelly fromage. Unfortunately, many top New Age artists ending up marketing their work for these purposes, and making too much of it to boot.
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W hen did new age music become cool? The mellow tones of new age were once the province of spas, wellness centers, yoga studios and hippie bookstores. These days, new age records — particularly the more rare LPs and cassettes released in the s and s — are a touchstone of cool. A wave of recent well-received reissues, coupled with a wave of younger musicians releasing brand new records in the genre, are keeping the flames of new age music alive.
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New-age music is a genre of music intended to create artistic inspiration , relaxation , and optimism. It is used by listeners for yoga , massage , meditation ,  reading as a method of stress management  to bring about a state of ecstasy rather than trance ,   or to create a peaceful atmosphere in their home or other environments, and is associated with environmentalism and New Age spirituality. New-age music includes both acoustic forms, featuring instruments such as flutes , piano , acoustic guitar and a wide variety of non-Western acoustic instruments , and electronic forms, frequently relying on sustained synth pads or long sequencer -based runs. Vocal arrangements were initially rare in the genre, but as it has evolved vocals have become more common, especially those featuring Native American -, Sanskrit -, or Tibetan -influenced chants, or lyrics based on mythology such as Celtic legends. There is no exact definition of new-age music. New-age music was influenced by a wide range of artists from a variety of genres. Tony Scott 's Music for Zen Meditation is considered to be the first new-age recording. New-age music is defined more by the use and effect or feeling it produces rather than the instruments and genre used in its creation;  it may be acoustic, electronic, or a mixture of both. New-age artists range from solo or ensemble performances using classical-music instruments ranging from the piano, acoustic guitar, flute or harp to electronic musical instruments , or from Eastern instruments such as the sitar , tabla , and tamboura. There is also a significant overlap of sectors of new-age music with ambient music , classical music , jazz , electronica , world music , chillout , space music , pop music and others.
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