Muzak Holdings LLC has filed for Chapter 11 protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, The Wall Street Journal reports. The company, whose name has become synonymous with the bland background music you hear on elevators or in department stores, is attempting to restructure its massive debts, reported to reach almost $500 million.
Muzak was founded in 1934, but the non-distracting background music the company licensed didn’t spread until Warner Brothers later purchased it. President Dwight Eisenhower notoriously played Muzak in the White House and NASA has reportedly used the elevator music to calm down astronauts during missions.
Filing for bankruptcy doesn’t mean the company will be gone for good and it certainly won’t rid the world of elevator music, as many other companies have taken on the genre, but it’s a tough blow for saxophonists who play instrumental covers of hit songs.