Study finds that songs have become more repetitive and simpler over the past four decades

A recent study published on Thursday has revealed that song lyrics have become simpler and more repetitive over the past four decades. The content of songs has also become more angry and self-centered in the last 40 years. Researchers analyzed over 12,000 songs in English from various genres from 1990 to 2020, including rap, country, pop, R&B, and rock.

The study, published in Scientific Reports, highlights how lyrics can serve as a reflection of society, showing how values, emotions, and concerns evolve over time. Lead author Eva Zangerle emphasized that there has been a dramatic change in the music landscape over the last 40 years, influenced by factors such as the internet and streaming.

The research looked at the emotions expressed in lyrics, the complexity and repetition of words used, and trends within and between genres. Across genres, lyrics were found to be simpler and more repetitive, with a decrease in positive and happy content. Rap music, in particular, has become more angry and repetitive compared to other genres.

In the streaming era

By Sophia Gonzalez

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