Music History

Twenty-five years ago (June 1), the music world changed with the original release of Napster

On June 1, 1999, Shawn Fanning told his friends about a new program he’d written. “It allows people to share songs on their computer with others over the internet. Try it out but don’t tell anyone, okay?”

No one could keep a secret and within months Napster–Shawn’s nickname because of his nappy hair–was being used by hundreds of thousands of people. Within a year, it threatened the viability of the entire music industry.

Napster was eventually sued out of existence, of course, but the music industry would never be the same.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38536 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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