Downbeat music is a musical form that has a soothing and relaxing sound. This genre of music is a subset of electronic music. Downbeat is also known as downtempo or “chill out” music. When people create this form electronic music, the purpose is to get people to calm down and relax.
Downbeat music puts the emphasis on the music but not the vocals. There are vocals in this music but they are not common throughout most downbeat songs. Keep in mind that downbeat beats are made to be hypnotic or repetitive. The purpose of the beat is to sooth an individual and cause them to relax while the music plays.
Downtempo grew out of electronic dance music. It evolved from this major music form into a subset as DJs and producers began to create slower versions of electronic music. The music also focuses on ambiance and feeling over theme or tone. Ambient music is similar to downbeat music except it does not have the same type of rhythmic patterns or beats.
This music form has its origins within European electronic music. Many musicians from different European nations such as Austria, Norway and Germany make and perform downtempo music for their fans. Groups and solo artists such as Royksopp, Parov Stelar, Howie B, Jazzonova and Zero 7 either specialize in downbeat music or have made some downbeat tunes during their career.
Keep in mind that downbeat music is more of an underground genre than a mainstream type of music. Many people want upbeat music with a great tempo that gets them dancing or makes them feel better about life. Downbeat music just does not provide that type of vibe. So, this form of music will not do well with mainstream audiences.
Downbeat music is for the type of audience that needs to calm down or for people who are feeling blue or sad on a particular day. This music is not for everyone but it does have its appeal. Over the years, there have been some mainstream downbeat songs in Europe that have been very popular with mainstream audiences. However, they are not that common.