Are excessive lyrics ruining pop music?

William Weir of Slate.com explores the idea that pop music is becoming way too verbose.  It’s a long article but a worthy read.

While wordless pop has disappeared from commercial radio, pop music has become ever more long-winded. The year-end top 10 songs from 1960 to 1969 have an average word count of 176. For the 1970s, the figure jumps to 244. In 2007, the average climbed to 436. The top 10 for the week of Feb. 2, 2008, features six songs over the 500-word mark. Chris Brown and T-Pain use 742 words in their “Kiss Kiss.” While music can express what words cannot, music rarely gets a chance in contemporary pop, and certainly not in “Kiss Kiss.” Except for the first two seconds, vocals fill the song’s every moment. Entirely absent are instrumental phrasings that allow a song (and singers) to breathe. Guys, take a break.

Weir gives some appropriate nods to a couple of amazing old tunes (Green Onions, and Maggot Brain) andI think you should read the whole article here.

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