Lo-fi In A Nutshell


Bryan Lim, Staff Writer

Lo-fi: a genre of music that has taken listeners by storm. Lo-fi, also known as chillhop, is a unique style of music that uses the notes and rhythm of hip hop in combination with synths of electronic music and small notes of jazz. It became widely popular throughout the Internet and has sparked many inspirations of the genre to be expanded upon. This genre came to life about a decade ago when a few music artists started using instruments such as drum machines to create a mellow sound that is well known in the lo-fi genre. 

Its popularity most likely sparked as a result of the YouTube channel “Chilled Cow” with a livestream known as “lofi hip hop radio – beats to relax/study to.” The livesteam became very popular due to the music’s calm yet upbeat tone that appeals to audiences doing work while listening, as well as how amazingly long the stream lasts for. It runs 24/7 and once went on for so long that YouTube had to temporarily terminate it. Additionally, the music in these livestreams is produced by lesser-known artists, such as Allem Ivernsom, that submit work as a way to gain more exposure. 

“In my opinion, I believe that lo-fi is an amazing type of music and mixes well when doing homework. It helps me feel relaxed and very calm, which definitely helps. I believe that lo-fi [is very popular] due to the fact that most of the people listening also feel the same effect as I do, which will help them study or do homework,” said freshman Zachary Min. 

Lo-fi is also shown to help with relaxation and studying. Some may claim that this could be a placebo effect; however, lo-fi does show actual evidence of relaxing people. Moreover, this effect is mainly because of the non-existence of vocals which helps with concentration, aiding the listener to their task at hand. 

“I don’t really listen to lo-fi much and it isn’t my cup of tea, but I definitely feel like it helps with studying and just vibing. I can see why many people enjoy listening to lo-fi as lyrics can be distracting, and it helps to have music that has a beat that doesn’t break your concentration. Whenever I listen to lo-fi, however, I feel very relaxed and calm which really helps me when I have to get something done,” said freshman Christine Zheng.

All in all, lo-fi is a very unique genre of music that has garnered lots of Internet attention. Lo-fi can help with completing homework, studying, and even calming your nerves whenever you’re feeling anxious. Based on the current success of lo-fi, the genre will most likely be on par with pop music, jazz, and other prominent genres. 


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