Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Theme of My Song Is...

I’m a little frustrated that Top 40 songs these days all have, more or less, the same themes – love and sex. Some popular song themes:

1)    I love her / him
2)    He / she loves me
3)    He / she left me
4)    I hate him
5)    Let’s party
6)    Let’s have sex

But what’s happened to all the ‘social commentary’ or ‘political’ type songs that used to be mainstream? What about songs that aren’t based on the above love themes? Some examples:

1)    Sunday Bloody Sunday
2)    Bitter Sweet Symphony
3)    Gangster’s Paradise
4)    Sowing the Seeds of Love
5)    Manic Monday
6)    Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
7)    Zombie
8)    Sign ‘O’ The Times

Or songs that approach the subject of love in an original, more profound or more poetic way?

1)    With or Without You
2)    True Colours
3)    November Rain
4)    Romeo and Juliet
5)    Head Over Feet
6)    Purple Rain
7)    Sledgehammer
8)    My Favourite Game

I’m sure there are even better examples than these; but they question is, where is this type of music today? The first thing to ask is why did these songs come about? There was probably a profound cause, a mood or a feeling that produced these songs. There also needed to be people with an intellect, a passion or a certain sensitivity to create these songs. Also, the public had to be receptive to these songs for them to become popular. So why not today?

It must either be (1) the public don’t want them, (2) songwriters don’t want to create them, (3) songwriters don’t have the ability or sensibilities to create them, (4) songwriters are prevented or deterred from creating them or (5) there are no issues or stimulus for the creation of such songs. I am tempted to conclude, however, that it’s a reflection of the superficial and vacuous nature of our society today.

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