Even though you are not a pro listener, you would likely have come across pop music a thousand times. But did you ever wonder what is pop music genre & why is it so cool? It is the most popular genre of music that emanated around the 1950s in the US & UK and wrapped rock & roll music until the 1960s & was later associated with more commercial intent.
You must have heard of two similar types of music like new pop music & rock pop genre, but there is a big difference between the three music genres. The genre of the new pop music is very different. It is based on post-punk music & synth-pop groups & uses heavy synthesizers to create the music. But the rock pop genre mainly refers to commercially successful music with professional songwriting & recording craft.
There are a few incomprehension related to pop music. Most music in the record chart or the pop music artist such as Ariana Grande song that you would have listened to on radio or TV is believed pop music while few people firmly believe that this genre is nothing but simple songs bragging only about partying, drinking, etc. I guarantee you will be shocked when I will uncover the reality that it is different with exponential margin.
You can consider it as a pool where sounds & choruses, of various styles, assemble at one place, blend melancholy with each other & deliver a sound filled with immense emotions of love, life, despair, & romance, etc. This essence resides in the heart of most music. Every era is marked with popular music of its time & it is so amazing that this genre continues to be the most listened music genre.
So what is pop music genre? How has it evolved throughout history? Have you ever wondered what pop music characteristics make it so cool among the mass audience? This is what you will find out here.
WHAT IS POP MUSIC ALL ABOUT?
Pop music is the most eclectic, rich in music & the most listened music genre. It is a short form of popular & that is sufficient to elaborate your question about what is the most popular genre?
Different musicologists or producers term it differently. A/c to Stephen Millward & David Hatch, this music is contrasted from popular, jazz & folk music. David Boyle, a music researcher, says it is that type of music offered by mass media to the common person. A/c to Bill Lamb, it’s the music that matches the tastes & interests of the urban middle class.
Whether it is the music you listen to on radio or TV, has millions of views, shares & find trending, all fall under the category of pop music.
Earlier, people believed it was only related to the singles chart. This later proved incorrect because pop music can communicate to the mass audience requiring various music genres, like jazz, novelty songs, rock, etc. to fall under its category.
Since pop music connects to a mass audience, you can not make pop music by do-it-yourself strategy. You will need an expert who understands its ups & downs to produce it professionally because blending different genres & composing a piece of appealing music is fighting tooth & nail.
Now you would be wondering why so many pop music artists with different music feel, senses & styles still categorize as pop music? Well, there’s an answer to that too. It has this unique ability to steal other style’s elements like rock, urban, dance, etc. & this is exactly why it can evolve & morph in any style without losing its essence.
And this is exactly why pop music artists like Katty Perry, Rihanna or Beyonce can produce music with an individual sense of style & simultaneously fall under the same category.
There is a structure that pop music artists use to create pop music. Firstly, it has repeated choruses where short-medium-length songs are written in a “verse-chorus” structure. Secondly, its ear-melting rhythm & tempo easily seduces a listener to dance to his/her heart’s content.
Now you know the basics knowledge about pop music & a little overview of its composition, let’s go back in history & find about its birth & evolution.
HISTORY ABOUT POP MUSIC
If you go back to history & read about the evolution of music through the decades, you will know that 1950 was the era of rock music. But you would be surprised to know this was also the birth-era for pop music? Hats off to Mitch Miller, an American record producer, for the invention of pop music. He combined music styles like country, blues & folk music & delivered one of the most popular music genres to the world.
An interesting fact came out to me that some of the parts of pop music can also be traced back to the blues music and it originated with African-American communities. But the partly entrance of the blues music can not be entitled as attributed to the origin of the whole pop music.
Because of Mitch Miller, pop music artists & legends like Elvis Presley delivered “Hound Dog” in 1953, a song still recalled a gem of its time.
Then came the Beatles in the 1960s, fetching rock & pop ballads from Britain that immediately caught the attention of American music lovers. The style swiftly climbed to the top rankings in American music charts & though renowned for being the most popular genre of music. This remarked the pop music as the most listened music genre of its time & it is still to this date.
From the 1970s until now, pop music continues to flourish due to the endless possibilities of its music genre & still gives you the same feeling like all your favorite musicians playing the same song, at the same time but with their unique style.
So what makes pop music so favored among the masses? What pop music characteristics this genre contains that makes it so distinctive that people love it?
POP MUSIC CHARACTERISTICS
Blends diverse music styles into one unique genre
This is the most dominant pop music characteristic of all. It borrows bits of styles from music genres like rock, country, urban, dance, or Latin & delivers the music blended with mixed styles. So it’s like when you’re listening to a single pop song, you’re enjoying a variety of styles of mixed-packaged music.
You’d be surprised to hear that even pop music artists buy the rights to use a sequence of other artists they like & then incorporate that sequence in their melody. Didn’t you notice Rhianna’s song “Live Your Life” used a popular chorus from O-Zone? Don’t tell me you didn’t.
And if you did miss it, don’t tell me you didn’t get shocked even on Jeanette’s catchy song “How It’s Got To Be” because that complete song sounded much familiar to “Go West” by Pet Shop Boys. Yes, some artists get roused so much that they decide to copy the whole melody.
Allures wide audience
To your surprise, the pop song was initially created for commercial purposes but due to its enchanting melody, it won the hearts of the general audience also.
It does not target a specific audience that requires distinct musical instruments & different playing styles instead unlocks broad to the mass audience.
And the reason behind these pop music characteristics is that it acquires styles of multiple music genres & mixes them in one single piece of action that catches the attention of the assorted audience.
Whether you are fond of jazz, love country, or head-bang at metal songs, you will eventually wind up appreciating the pop song.
This appeal does not just stop here but also gets appreciation across the country. This means your very lovable music might also be someone else’s joy, whether it be in the US, Middle East, or East Asia.
Tempts to dance
Pop music doesn’t just treat your ears but also seductively urges you to dance. Groovy beats, catchy lyrics, heart-melting repeated nature of choruses invite you to stand on your feet and dance without the care of the world.
Now you must be wondering when tango does that stuff? Why go for pop music?
Yes, tango is a piece of music made precisely for dance. But to tango, you need to “learn to tango”. This means it is also an art where dancers perform specific moves. But in pop music, you don’t have to worry about that as it’s a genre with freestyle dancing. Simply put, pop music means “dance the way you like”.
Focuses on the general message
While some music genres like Black Sabbath, Radio-head, The Clash, etc. are alleged to talk about wars & political activism, this pop music characteristic is quite different from them.
It focuses on general & widely accepted topics like love, romance, & sadness, etc. Therefore, the songs by pop music artists like Katty Perry, Michael Jackson, etc. revolve around these topics which is also the reason for their fame & global acceptance of this music style.
Why is pop music so popular globally? Because it is the most loved music genre among the people. Various genres blend into one single pop music genre that takes the music listener to the level of extreme entertainment.
Pop music has a unique style that appeals to a wide audience & lures them to dance because it spreads the general message welcomed by the masses.
Thanks to Mitch Miller whose work will be carried on. Now you have renowned pop music artists like Justin Bieber, Adele, Lady Gaga, & many other artists that produce great pop music.
So by now, you’d probably have a greater sense of what is pop music genre & what pop music characteristics make it so cool among the audience. By the way, which one is your favorite pop song?