It did not always used to be this way, but mainstream music is terrible now. By mainstream music, I mean the songs played over and over again on the radio and the ones that become extremely popular, followed by mass hysteria. What we call popular music these days is simple, unintelligent, and disgusting. With this simple-minded work catching wildfire, respectable artists are now beginning to think they can dumb down their songs and bring down their standards. This trend needs to end!
Mainstream music was great in the late 1990s until around mid-2008. It was a time when mainstream music had heart and was not epitomized by empty words. Songs like "Move Along" by the All American Rejects, "When I'm Gone" by Eminem, "Face Down" by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, and "Sexy Back" by Justin Timberlake could all share a medium that had respectable tunes and lyrics you could feel represented you. However, that has all changed now. Mainstream music evidently does not need exceptional lyrics, nor does it even need to sound good to make it on America's radio stations these days. Look below! Which chorus do you think is better?
"I can see us holding hands, walking on the beach our clothes in the sand, I can see us on the country side, sittin' on the grass laying side by side, you could be my baby, when I look at my lady, girl you amaze me, ain't gotta do anything crazy, see all I want you to do is be my love (so don't give away), my love (so don't give away), my love (so don't give away), ain't another woman that can take my spot, my love....." : My Love by Justin Timberlake (2006)
"You make me feel so la la la la la, you make me feel so la la la la la, you make feel so la la la la la, you make me feel so la la la la la." : You Make Me Feel by Cobra Starship (2011)
Up above, you can see the major difference in lyric value between old mainstream and new mainstream. Both of these songs fell in the genre "pop" at the time of their release. It is sad to see how lame you can sound to make it on the top 40 radio station these days. The worst part about this is that former mainstream artists, that used to put out quality music, now can get lazy and write horrible songs. Maroon 5 is a great example of how mainstream artists turn bad. I remember some of the great songs of their past, and then I see a huge drop in quality of what they are releasing now. Once again, look below...
"I don't mind spending every day, I know your corner in the pouring rain, look for the girl with the broken smile, ask her if she wants to stay a while, and she will be loved, she will be loved." : She Will Be Loved by Maroon 5 (2002)
"Take me by the tongue and I'll know you, kiss me till you drunk and I'll show you, I've got the moves like Jagger, I've got the moves like Jagger, I've got the mooooooooooooves like Jagger." : Moves Like Jagger by Maroon 5 (2012)
Look above at the difference! Ten years ago, the lyrics to their songs had heart, and now, their lyrics have become empty and uninteeeeeeeeeeeeeligent. I don't mind simple songs with simple choruses, but I do hate simple-minded songs that sound like they were written in five minutes while eating a bowl of soup. And it is not Maroon 5's fault either; it is where the genre of pop and mainstream music has taken them. It is what they do, and they have to keep up with the repetitive, simple nature of the genre, nowadays. I understand that, but I think it may be time for them and others like Breathe Carolina and Pitbull to go back to their roots.
I can characterize mainstream music today for you in one paragraph. Mainstream music today is drop a Justin Bieber song, play "Call Me Maybe," play the new Flo Rida reincarnation of "Club Can't Handle Me," play any random David Guetta song, play anything involving a boy band, play anything with a recycled dance beat behind it, play anything featuring Wiz Khalifa, play "Moves Like Jagger," and drop a Ke$ha/Gaga here and there. There are maybe a few artists like Adele, Katy Perry, Bruno Mars, Gotye, and Fun, which do not follow the usual formula of mainstream music, but all mainstream radio stations had to do was play them about 1200 times before their best songs made me cringe.
Think about what popular music used to be, and think about what popular music is now. Popular music is simple-minded, cheap, and most of it sounds the same. It is sad to see that the lyrics cannot keep up with what they used to be. It isn't like Ke$ha is going to blow-ow-ow-ow-ow-ow-ow us away with heart-felt lyrics, but boy, we know she can drink. Pitbull may not give us everything we are looking for, but he's good for a cheap dance beat. But here is what we can expect out of mainstream music for years to come. One Direction will continue to sing about empty promises off key and Justin Bieber will continue to work with rappers to bring up his street cred... Anywho, as you can see by my analysis, modern mainstream music has no intelligence, has no heart, and has no place in my playlist.
For further reading, see the following:
The Problem with Mainstream Top 40 Radio Stations: http://expertscolumn.com/content/problem-mainstream-top-40-radio-stations
Top 5 Most Overrated Music Artists Today: http://expertscolumn.com/content/top-5-most-overrated-music-artists-today
New Boy Band Movement Worse Than Ever?: http://expertscolumn.com/content/new-boy-band-movement-worse-ever