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Why are only a few chords used in hit songs in recent times?
Old 20th December 2015
  #241
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post

Also, the music in cartoons, TV, and movies directed towards children used to be much less condescending. They're being treated like idiots, and they don't even know or care. Children of today (at least here in the US) reach adulthood practically without ever hearing anything of any actual musical substance.
Just to give a perspective from outside of the US, here in Japan music education is very good. Every junior high has a brass band club and the kids are trained to perform at a high level. Learning an instrument at an early age is something many parents want their children to have the opportunity to do. And this shows in the degree of sophistication of popular music here. This is probably the reason why pop music from the Western world has seen a great decline in popularity in Japan over the last 20 years. Even the top boy bands like Arashi use a lot of sophisticated arrangements in their music, especially in the deep album cuts. Real musicians are still prized over DAW based compositions so top groups bring a constant supply of work for session musicians here too.
Old 20th December 2015
  #242
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pichi View Post
Just to give a perspective from outside of the US, here in Japan music education is very good. Every junior high has a brass band club and the kids are trained to perform at a high level. Learning an instrument at an early age is something many parents want their children to have the opportunity to do. And this shows in the degree of sophistication of popular music here. This is probably the reason why pop music from the Western world has seen a great decline in popularity in Japan over the last 20 years. Even the top boy bands like Arashi use a lot of sophisticated arrangements in their music, especially in the deep album cuts. Real musicians are still prized over DAW based compositions so top groups bring a constant supply of work for session musicians here too.
Thank you for your perspective.

Our country used to strive for excellence. We once held higher standards in all aspects of life, and there was a time when the U.S. was admired by the entire world. I don't know what happened here, but somehow the importance of the arts and culture has been diminished greatly, and intelligence and sophistication became things to be ridiculed. Now morons are famous, and thug culture is glorified. If people here cared half as much about music and the arts as they do about sports, it would be a much different place.

It's ironic that many of the top session musicians and audio engineers in this country work very hard to become professionals in their field, and then in order to make a living, they must waste their talents creating garbage to be consumed by the masses.
Old 20th December 2015
  #243
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
Thank you for your perspective.

Our country used to strive for excellence. We once held higher standards in all aspects of life, and there was a time when the U.S. was admired by the entire world. I don't know what happened here, but somehow the importance of the arts and culture has been diminished greatly, and intelligence and sophistication became things to be ridiculed.
When was this Shangri-La period in American history you speak of?
Old 20th December 2015
  #244
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herr Weiss View Post
When was this Shangri-La period in American history you speak of?
Perhaps I'm romanticizing the past, but if I'm not mistaken, the U.S. once set the standards for the world in technology, industry, and manufacturing, and American music and art was admired and emulated all over the world. Maybe I'm wrong, but that's what they told me in school anyways.
Old 20th December 2015
  #245
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herr Weiss View Post
Nice find!!

It sounds nothing like what I hear from the Ukrainians in my church.
Could it be that they speak Russian instead of Ukrainian??

Could it be that they are singing in Ruthenian; the original language of yore.

Questions?
They are singing in Georgian.

See The Trio Mandili
Old 20th December 2015
  #246
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc_r View Post
They are singing in Georgian.

See The Trio Mandili

Aha, that explains it all!

Thank you dc_r!
Old 23rd December 2015
  #247
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The 2015 hits it might very well be the case of simple chord progressions of 3-4 chords over and over, like for instance Katy Perry - Wide Awake. I think the OP was meaning that the subtle variance of maybe just switching the chords in question in another order, or add another chord-progression for a pre-chorus and/or chorus was the case, and not necessarily mean odd chords or weird tempo as the discussion here and there got into (I've scanned through the thread).

There's one factor which seems to be forgotten a bit while speaking about hits; there's a difference between hits which last for decades and hits that last maybe just a few weeks and then are being forgotten more or less. While the "long-termed" hits - at least in almost in any case I'm aware of - seems to have the variance of another chord-progression for at least one song-part, the "short-termed" hits perhaps have the feature of what the topic is describing but also could have the before-mentioned feature.

As for the long-termed hits there are of course exceptions proving the rule, like U2 - With Or Without You. Then we have Alphaville - Forever Young, but imho it doesn't count since it's a long progression of 8 chords or more, which will automatically variate the structure (as it would have if the chord-sequence was different for different song-parts). In the cases the rule is broken for these category of hits, there are of course more emphasizing on other things like melody-variations, dynamics and different arrangements etc.

Personally I find it a bit more interesting if there's this kind of subtle variance in the chord-structure for at least one part of the song. Of some reason it make the song less tiresome upon repeated playback to me. That said, I'm not yet very tired of With Or Without You and Forever Young (well, maybe a bit but they are classics). Regarding Wide Awake I have to come back and provide my opinion in 20-30 years as it's to early to know lol (not sure it holds up for a long-termed hit/will be as well-known in the future as the others though).

Regarding the question of the topic I'm not sure it has to do with songwriters today lacking musical schooling more than before, but it might be a cause. I'm not sure it requires schooling to make more than one progression though, but might help of course. At least some knowledge of the Circle of Fifths certainly helps (yes it can be used cleverly in a certain way regarding stuff like these). The phenomenon might connect to the "modern society of consuming" and the less need of long-termed hits as more songs are produced today. It's still money and connections which determines what gets in the spotlight to begin with (more now than before imho), so I'm not sure it has to do what the general public wants.

So, another explanation would be that the guys on the big chairs (while listening to demos) may go for what they found catchy at first glance, and short-termed hits or songs with few chord progressions may be more often considered than before because they believe it will be "quick money". And while at that.. It's worth pointing out is that there are certain songs that grows on you, they may not blow you away on the first listening or you maybe didn't like them at all. Alternatively they sound good and will make you curious so you have to listen again to "fully comprehend". Then, later, in a few years or maybe even after a longer period of time - Now you like them.. Maybe even find them great. With other words, these kind of song are not as much considered although I believe these often are the more "complex" songs that could be the kind of long-termed hits.

Just some spontaneous analyzing.
Old 1 week ago
  #248
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For you guys to know how advanced Japan is, here's their cartoon music which is academically speaking as good as classical pieces in modulations and advanced progressions, with jazzy chords, and great mixing, and great production.



Old 1 week ago
  #249
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Tennessee Whiskey - D G & A https://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/tab..._chords_501578

FGC for Ravels Bolero... many pieces of art are made with 3 components... easier to do...
Old 1 week ago
  #250
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Quote:
Originally Posted by konokoknk View Post
For you guys to know how advanced Japan is, here's their cartoon music which is academically speaking as good as classical pieces in modulations and advanced progressions, with jazzy chords, and great mixing, and great production.



Solid case for fewer chords
Old 1 week ago
  #251
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Agreed Newguy... but is it OK to pick up girls in dungeons? ~ i am guessing its OK - they are fairly good pieces of work... I know my work is good - because one time - when I was young - and feeling very down on the job... My boss picked up my spirits by saying: "You're a REAL piece of work." - some things you never forget....
Old 1 week ago
  #252
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by s wave View Post
Agreed Newguy... but is it OK to pick up girls in dungeons? ~ i am guessing its OK - they are fairly good pieces of work... I know my work is good - because one time - when I was young - and feeling very down on the job... My boss picked up my spirits by saying: "You're a REAL piece of work." - some things you never forget....
Haha. They’re very well done songs, I just saw a set to a good spike, couldn’t resist.
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