By 'in space' I mean the interstellar civilization that Guardians of the Galaxy and its characters all exist in, and the worlds that they frequent, of which Earth appears separated from.

In Guardians of the Galaxy, Peter Quill still carries with him his old Walkman and Awesome Mix tape he had with him when he was abducted 26 years ago in 1988. His ship also has a console tape deck that he could not have brought with him when he was abducted from Earth, which the Xandarians are able to duplicate easily when providing him with a new ship. This suggests that the technology exists to repair, maintain, and duplicate Peter's Walkman technology. This is also confirmed by the Word of God.

However, there are a few scenes that suggest that music (and personal music players) is foreign to the aliens in the movie. A prison guard confiscates Peter's Walkman, suggesting its value as rarity or novelty. And Peter introduces Gamora not just to Earth music but apparently music in general. She is both moved by it and does not know how to speak while wearing headphones. Gamora is also unfamiliar with dancing, although I believe Drax says his people dance.

And, if you've seen Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2,

Peter is gifted a Zune. I forget by whom - Rocket maybe? - but I believe he incorrectly implies the Zune is the latest technology, even though the movie is set in 2014.

This seems especially unusual to me. If space tech can duplicate and repair Earth music players so easily, why are there no alien personal music players in space? I can understand that Peter might have an affection for his old Walkman and not just the music, but are there no music players in space other than what can be scrounged up from Earth? Why is listening to music so foreign to everyone? Is there no music in space?

  • 4
    There are two kinds of people in the universe: One who can understand music and other who can't. That girl is latter, so stop trying on her. :)
    – user931
    May 13, 2017 at 1:16
  • Is Gamora actually unfamiliar with dancing I seem to recall her saying she does not dance not asking what this dancing thing is, as for music in the universe I would imagine it exists it just may be Earth music is considered exotic or something like a binaural beat to alien physiology to explain how they seem to react to it. With all the background music in the movies I cant tell if we hear in universe examples of music
    – revenant
    May 13, 2017 at 8:05
  • And well, if you were ever to be guest of a prison, you would check beforehand that anything that is not allowed by the reglament is strictly forbidden.
    – SJuan76
    May 13, 2017 at 11:19
  • 1
    Kraglin gives him the Zune. And he says that it's what "everyone" on Earth is listening to, which is pretty clearly a (out-of-universe) joke, because even when they were new they weren't especially popular.
    – KSmarts
    Jun 1, 2017 at 20:18

2 Answers 2


Yes, music does exist off-earth.

For example, in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, when Drax tells the story of how he first met his wife, he describes music that everyone was dancing to except her. This was his home planet, showing that other planets had their own musical traditions.

It should also be noted that while some characters are perplexed by earth technology, none seem to be surprised by the music itself.

  • "One might even think she were dead." They even kept a Zune with 300+ earth songs!
    – user40790
    May 15, 2017 at 16:27

Most certainly they have music-playing technology in space. In Vol. 2, if you'll remember, Rocket asks if they have any 'clones of Quill's old music' on the Ravager ship. We don't see any tapes, so I think it's safe to assume the music was backed up to the ship's computer systems. Mainly because the music is echoing throughout the ship as the mutineers are murdered.

As for the Zune. It was bought with all the music on-board. It wasn't bought for its music playing abilities, but its contents of earth music.

Quill just prefers earth music. He's not a very enlightened guy in that respect. I know if I was in deep space, I'd take in the local space-culture. Surely that's half the fun. I know that's not relevant, but whatever.

  • 2
    Hi, welcome to SF&F. The question wasn't about whether or not they could duplicate a music player, after all any sound can be recorded, even if music isn't a concept they know. The question was if any non-Earth societies have their own music.
    – DavidW
    Apr 23, 2019 at 23:53
  • 1
    I think "not enlightened" is a bit harsh. Quill has been Out There for a couple of decades. He could have sampled everything from Grocian Nose Flute reggae to Koozbanian Gravel Crushing Symphonies in C-Skoof...and just decided it weren't for him. And, of course, there's the huge sentimental aspect for him.
    – Blaze
    Apr 23, 2019 at 23:57

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