Whats Pop?

New Tricks

Platinum Member
Others shamelessly target a previously defined sub sector of the known pop landscape in an effort to cash in. It's not for love of the art, but for the love of money. It's product, or just another widget. And it shows.
That is the epitome of pop.....a 10 on the sliding scale.


Platinum Member
Hey Aydee long time since we heard from you and then you pop up with a deep philosophical question again!
This was quite (pop)ular at one time... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9CDs067081E

Hey JB! Yea, its been ages. And I'm cured, but I do slip up occasionally : )) Howyoubin?

Bing, yup, thats my point. Wondering if there are any common denominators to Bing & Adele? Is there a formula? A musical one which connects Bing to Adele all the way through the ages?


Jeremy Bender

Platinum Member
The end result being mass-appeal, I sure wish I knew what the formula for it was.
It would be like knowing the winning lottery numbers in advance of the drawing.


Gold Member
I would disagree with some, and say it is a genre today. Some of the traits would be frequently dance oriented, and rather shallow musically. Beiber, Katy Perry, that whole cadre of divas, and the tween bands of good looking young people playing rather thoughtless, lowest common denominator music inhabit the pop space. If when you see them perform on tv, it's a girl singer surrounded by seven dancers but no band in sight, it's pop music. If the lyrics insult your intelligence, that's a clue. If the chorus is derived by singing the word "whoa" up and down the scale with a severe look on the singer's face as if they're actually saying something, or the intro is a lifeless guitar ostinato written by someone with no imagination, there you are.

There is a very recognizable factory odor to it, very easy to spot.
Have you ever watched the Sinatra show or any TV show that has had musical acts from the 1950s until today? They all do this. When Sammy Davis came out, the band was behind the curtain. When Buddy Rich came out, the band was usually behind the curtain.

Pop music is for mass appeal, there's no doubt about that. But you can't say it's gotten any more vapid, or less about the music. Even in the 20s, the most popular jazz albums were novelty/pop albums.

You can go back further. Eine Kleine Nachtmusik is probably the most famous pop song of all time. It's a super simple melody that just repeats with a bounce so rich people could dance to it at dinner parties.

I think you are looking back at the past with rose colored glasses in respect to music history.

Midnite Zephyr

Platinum Member
Today's pop sounds like nursery rhymes with simple keyboard lines surrounded by an electronic beat machine. I feel too mature for most of it, but sometimes it just puts the boogie in the butt, and one cannot help it than move to the beat.


Senior Member
Growing up, Pop was what the radio stations played on their Top 40 lists, Popular music. Pop has now taken on a genre of its own but is very fluid. Todays Pop is not the same as Pop 5 years ago. Always evolving.
Best definition I've read. Yes. What is/was "popular" meaning what was played most on the radio. Though AM radio back in the day was playing Carpenters followed by Led Zep followed by Al Green. So it was all Pop. Only later in the 1980s did these "light rock", "smooth jazz" stations come to be and suddenly pop was being divided up. To the detriment of listeners.


Senior Member
I grew up in the late 70's on into the 80's and I absolutely detested what passed for "popular" music. I thought when Zeppelin finished the era of digestible music had ended. Now I realize it all boils down to tastes in music but gosh darn electronica, zero musicianship in much of what passed for popular music in the 80's and now it's even worse. When grunge popped up in the very early 90's I honestly breathed a sigh of relief. But then grunge got corporatized and it turned to crap. At least Soundgarden are making digestible music. Even the music that passes for metal these days is garbage. I listen to mostly old 70's music and current fusion jazz.

I think pop used to be defined very broadly in the 60s and 70s when a listener to pop radio could hear "Tie A Yellow Ribbon," followed by "Miss You," followed by a Neal Diamond tune.

Today, pop is a carefully defined radio playlist that, at the moment, features Justin Bieber, Adele, Zayn, and 21 Pilots being played once or even twice an hour.

Here's the latest Billboard Pop Chart... http://www.billboard.com/charts/pop-songs

Wave Deckel

Gold Member


Silver Member
Pop----Popular music----accepted by a vast majority of masses....music which gets so popular by just one listen by many people compared to ...... Jethro Tull , any Moonie played tunes and such would never become Pop.

Pop music never need several spins to digest or to find the hidden gems.....its all out there in just one listen...


Silver Member
I think you are looking back at the past with rose colored glasses in respect to music history.
You may be right. I would wager that today's pop doesn't stand up to the past though. Sammy Davis Jr. was popular because of his huge talent, and the same could be said for Mozart.

I don't think we'll here Katie Perry in 200 years, but I heard Eine Kleine Nachtmusik performed last weekend.

Anon La Ply

PS- Hello everyone!
Hi Abe. Good to see you again :)

If you're playing anything like a backbeat there is a good chance that you are playing pop or a pop variant.

Creating grooves that compel human bodies to jiggle about is a pop thing to do - reaching out to our animal selves. The old classical crew would have been horrified such base crudeness! Dad's mother was a big fan of schmaltzy Viennese waltzes (also pop) and she was as disgusted by his noisy Benny Goodman music (also pop) as Dad was disgusted by the 60s pop and rock (also pop) that we kids listened too.

All genres have their own version of pop - degrees of populism - as well as more internally consistent art that Rolling Stone journalists tend to call "self indulgent".