Let’s UnPop This: Repetitive Pop Music & The Shazam Effect

shockwebpic_repetitivemusicA must-read feature from The Atlantic looks into why the state of [pop] music is the way it is…repetitive, monotonous, homogeneous, super loud and compressed and in many cases, super cheesy.

As Derek Thompson writes in this month’s issue, the music industry has learned how to use data from apps like Spotify and Shazam to predict new hits. However, just a glimpse at the Billboard charts will tell you that today’s pop music is more homogenous that it has been in decades. Why? Because we like to hear the same songs, over and over again.

So, Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did. Let’s be real, the big music arena needs more variety. What do you say we fix this? There is nothing wrong with pop music when it’s good but there are more amazing music makers than ever before. And for the most part, these artists are not getting the exposure they deserve because the main music channels of exposure, the ones with big audiences, are too hung up on fabricated trends or fascinated with what is coming out of the mainstream big-money supported media machine. On top of this, most of the music talk that goes on around the popular music blogs, news outlets and social media is usually focused on something other than the actual music. Aren’t we putting too much emphasis on style and gossip and ‘story’ rather than looking deeper into the music?

Our future musical gems and genius artists are getting lost in the cookie cutter-clutter. Yes, there are great indie, boutique, niche and underground scenes that are thriving, some of which where remaining ‘underground’ is part of the thrill. But, there is also a growing need for some balance; for the sake of the talented artists who deserve to make a professional living, for the sake of our future music history and for the sake of our ears.

Algorithms, data, and clickbait headlines should not be the lead in shaping our music culture, don’t you think? I say show your support for what’s great and ‘unpopular’. Let’s unpop this.

image: the atlantic

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