In the 1960s, 85% of pop music was written in major keys. Now that number is around 40%. Sure, pop music tastes have gotten more “sophisticated” (except for Ke$ha), but what else could be behind this changing trend?
A team of researchers set out to track the patterns of the last half century’s worth of pop hits, and found some interesting changes. Not only are songs using more minor keys, they are also slower and longer. Emotional songs are also more likely to be written in major keys (and vice versa), putting a flip on subject and tone.
Scientific American has a great rundown of the research and some of the shifts in pop music tastes. What do you think?