Psychologists have figured out why songs are becoming popular

(ORDO NEWS) — It is well known that not all songs get into the charts and become hits. But why do some immediately go “to the people” and sound on every radio wave, while others remain little known?

Now psychologists have figured out what features a piece of music should have in order to be remembered by the listener.

“Keep it simple, and people will reach out to you,” says the saying. It turns out that the same principle applies in advertising and even in the preparation of instructions: the more readable the font or the more explanatory illustrations in the text, the easier it is for the consumer to perceive the information and the more willingly he will buy the product he likes.

This rule and music did not pass. Researchers from Curtin University (Australia) studied 271 songs that appeared in the UK chart from 1999 to 2014.

They were interested in song processing fluency, that is, how easily and quickly our brain processes the information offered.

This inevitably affects how we perceive this information – “too complicated and boring” or “simple and incendiary”.

Lyrics were processed by a computer program that evaluated their readability, the presence of rhymes, and the overall complexity of the lyrics.

The popularity of the researchers was assessed by what position and how long the song occupied in the weekly charts.

It turned out that the simpler the listener’s brain perceived the lyrics of the song, the more popularity it achieved, taking the highest positions in the charts.

But the fluency of processing turned out to be unrelated to the duration of popularity, that is, “simple” songs quickly became hits, but just as quickly left the charts.

In addition, scientists have identified two main “ingredients” of a popular song: these are the most consonant rhymes (“earth” – “ship”) and the most readable text.

It was these songs that most often achieved explosive popularity, although, as the researchers suggest, too simple texts quickly bore the listener, after which the composition loses popularity, giving way to the next hit.

In the future, the researchers plan to study other song samples to see if the “simpler is better” rule applies to, say, the Beatles’ work , which remains popular to this day.


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