Journal article

United Kingdom “top 5” pop music lyrics

AC North, AE Krause, R Kane, L Sheridan

Psychology of Music | SAGE | Published : 2018


The present research conducted a computerised analysis of the content of all lyrics from the United Kingdom’s weekly top 5 singles sales charts (Study 1, 1962-2011), and considered their macroeconomic correlates (Study 2, 1960-2011). Study 1 showed that coverage of interpersonal relationships consistently reflected a self-centred and unsophisticated approach; coverage of violence featured predominantly anti-authoritarian denial rather than overt depictions; and more recent lyrics were more stimulating. Study 2 showed no evidence that variations in lyrical optimism predicted future variations in economic optimism and subsequently GDP; but, consistent with the environmental security hypothesis..

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