OPINION: Modern music lacks compared to music from the 20th century

Music. It’s been around forever. It’s defined decades. It’s empowered people. Many popular songs from the 1980s were innovative, inspirational and groundbreaking, unlike today’s.  

John Lennon’s 1988 song “Imagine” came at a time when the Vietnam War, Civil Rights Movement and the LGBTQ+ Movement were in full-force and affecting millions. His song inspired many with his lyrics imagining a world where everyone was equal and treated fairly.

Imagine there’s no countries/ It isn’t hard to do/ Nothing to kill or die for/ And no religion too/ Imagine all the people living life in peace, you,” one verse said.

As well as  a message, many artists had immense amounts of talent. Working hard and having an amazing voice was what one needed to rise to the top.

“The King of Pop” or Michael Jackson, didn’t gain his title from breezing through life. He could sing, dance and act, gaining millions of fans worldwide. Jackson’s 1982 “Thriller” music video “turned the world upside-down with what is still considered the greatest music video of all time,” according to Who’s The Bomb.com, a pop culture site.

Popular music from today has lost its meaning and talent. With the rise of platforms like YouTube, it seems like anyone with a camera can become famous. Songs with no meaning rise to the top of the charts easily. One of the big hits in 2017 was “Gucci Gang” by Lil Pump, a song with a chorus of only two alternating words.

“Gucci gang, Gucci gang, Gucci gang (Gucci gang!)/ Gucci gang, Gucci gang, Gucci gang, Gucci gang/ Gucci gang, Gucci gang, Gucci gang (Gucci gang!)” is the chorus sung by the 17 year-old rapper.

This repetitive, meaningless chorus ruins the beat, and the music.

Although at the surface, today’s music seems terrible compared to the songs of the past, there are a few gems.

American rapper Logic came out with “1-800-273-8255”, a song that raised awareness for suicide in April of 2017. Featuring big artists like Khalid and Alessia Cara, the song has meaning and talent.

“I’ve been praying for somebody to save me, no one’s heroic/ And my life don’t even matter, I know it, I know it/ I know I’m hurting deep down but can’t show it,” Logic raps.

According to a Billboard Article about Logic’s song, the “[Suicide Prevention] Lifeline received the second-highest daily call volume ever at that time — over 4,573 calls.” The music industry has  shifted with the ever-changing pop culture of the world. In the 80’s, bad artists were somewhat “filtered” because it was harder for artists to gain recognition. Today, artists can rise to fame practically anywhere, so stupid songs are available in abundance.