Study shows Pop Music is getting sadder but more danceable?

Singers like Adele have contributed to the sad-ifying of pop music

Singers like Adele have contributed to the sad-ifying of pop music

Or, in the words of Lady Gaga's first hit song, "Just dance".

Furthermore, researchers found the presence of male singers in popular music had decreased over the last 30 years, while female-led tracks had become more popular in the last decade.

As the AP reports, it found that there are less songs about being happy and more songs about being sad.

"The use of positive emotions has declined over the years, and semantic indicators of loneliness and social isolation have increased in frequency", the paper reads, referencing song lyrics.

"Successful songs are characterized by a larger percentage of female artists compared to all songs", they said.

That finding comes at a time when the music industry is wrestling with the issue of gender inequality, and men overwhelmingly dominate the ranks of artists and songwriters.

Songs were considered successful if they made it into Top 100 charts, which less than 4 percent of new releases do every year.

The research showed that classical and jazz songs were "unlikely" to be successful.

Also emerging in the study was that pop and dance seem to be growing in popularity, while rock has been losing ground from the early 2000s.

The researchers emphasize that they were looking for the trends in the acoustic properties and the moods describing the sounds.

The team gave examples of happy songs from 1985, including "Live is Life" by Opus, "Freedom" by Wham!, and Bruce Springsteen's "Glory Days".

"But of course a large component of success is still something that even mathematics can not quantify".

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