BuzzJack
Entertainment Discussion

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register | Help )

Latest Site News
> -
 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> Are new pop artists struggling to break through?
Track this topic - Email this topic - Print this topic - Download this topic - Subscribe to this forum
AcerBen
post Dec 16 2019, 10:12 AM
Post #1
BuzzJack Gold Member
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 2,885
Member No.: 3,429
Joined: 18-May 07
   No Gallery Pics
 


By "pop", I mean in the widest sense of the word, from your teen-oriented pop to R&B to singer-songwriters. Mainstream radio-friendly artists who write timeless pop songs that reach a wide audience.

As a starting point, I've looked at every new artist who's had a UK top 10 hit this year (I've defined new as anyone who's broken through in the last three years).

It's been a good year for Hip-Hop/Rap/Grime etc

Aitch
AJ Tracey
Arizona Zervas
Dave
Dominic Fike
Headie One
J Hus
J. Cole
Lil Nas X
Lil Tecca
Mist
NSG
Russ
Steel Banglez
Stormzy
Young T & Bugsey

And not bad for Dance

Jax Jones
Joel Corry
Marshmello
Meduza & Goodboys
Regard

But I make it only 11 new pop artists have had top 10 hits this year.

Ava Max
Billie Eilish
Dermot Kennedy
Freya Ridings
Jorja Smith
Lauv
Lewis Capaldi
Lizzo
Mabel
Tom Walker
Tones and I

Billie and Mabel are great (actually I think they all have their merits, including Lewis!), but it's a very short list isn't it? What's going wrong, if anything?

OK maybe just looking at the top 10 is short-sighted (let me know if I've missed anyone else out who's had a good year) but isn't that still the gold standard of a crossover hit? Or am I being old-fashioned and actually it doesn't matter anymore?

And it doesn't mean that there aren't any good new artists out there. And yes who cares about the charts, but one way or another we want our faves to have success don't we? Georgia might be great but she's got to start doing some numbers soon if she's going to have a viable career.

So has it become more difficult to launch pop artists? It's just my random Monday morning thought as I was listening to the last X Factor winner Dalton Harris' new single and I realised that despite how talented he is, and the platform he's been given by a TV show, he's got little to no chance of being a success. Perhaps you could say that's a good thing, but doesn't it say something about how the music industry has changed in the last few years and is it not a worry?

Going back only 10 years or so, it seemed like all a major record label had to do was put a song out there with a video, service it, see it get playlisted by radio and TV, do a few TV appearances and six weeks later they were in the charts.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Matheus
post Dec 16 2019, 10:35 AM
Post #2
Matty
**
Group: Members
Posts: 117
Member No.: 7,941
Joined: 16-December 08
   No Gallery Pics
 


To me, it feels like streaming and the way music is consumed nowadays has a lot to do with how much new pop acts struggle to break through.

For instance, I can't picture a pop artist like Pixie Lott having hits in 2019 like she had back in the day. You hardly ever see pop dominating Spotify Top10 like we had on iTunes (especially aroud this time of the year, where XFactor, Xmas and all major pop releases dominated the charts).

Also, can't remember any other pop act past 2014 who's made any big impact worldwide like Ariana did.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Jüpiter👑
post Dec 16 2019, 10:42 AM
Post #3
they're girls - and cousins too!!
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 4,947
Member No.: 22,895
Joined: 21-January 16
   No Gallery Pics
 


I think its just not as pop(heh)ular as it used to be outside of certain remits.

A lot of the big pop songs in the last decade were positive anthems or power ballads. The mood of pop culture right now in general feels to lean towards darker and grittier, so that kind of thing isn't hitting mass appeal.

Also stuff that isn't pure pop seems to be resonating better for e.g. parties and club music, e.g. Mabel and Rita's Tiesto collabs.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
coi
post Dec 16 2019, 10:50 AM
Post #4
BuzzJack Platinum Member
******
Group: Chart Mod
Posts: 5,352
Member No.: 73,240
Joined: 23-June 18
   No Gallery Pics
 


Well you've listed 16 new 'hip-hop/rap/grime' artists there (I'm aware there are a few other examples too though), Stormzy isn't new at all since he had hits in 2015 and several of the others listed have only had one hit anyway (e.g. Lil Tecca, Arizona Zervas, and Dominic Fike who I wouldn't really class as hip-hop/rap/grime myself). Only two of those 11 pop artists you've listed have only had one hit (Dermot Kennedy and Tones and I).

It's still been a successful year for pop music but it's mostly the already established artists that dominate (Camila Cabello, Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Shawn Mendes etc).

You're right to point out that new pop artists are finding it more difficult to break through than ten years ago, but that might just be because the genre isn't really as popular as it used to be. Personally I think it's a good thing that record labels and radio stations can't force songs to be successful now because some of them get pushed way too hard when they aren't actually that good laugh.gif
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
AcerBen
post Dec 16 2019, 10:54 AM
Post #5
BuzzJack Gold Member
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 2,885
Member No.: 3,429
Joined: 18-May 07
   No Gallery Pics
 


QUOTE(Matheus @ Dec 16 2019, 10:35 AM) *
To me, it feels like streaming and the way music is consumed nowadays has a lot to do with how much new pop acts struggle to break through.

For instance, I can't picture a pop artist like Pixie Lott having hits in 2019 like she had back in the day. You hardly ever see pop dominating Spotify Top10 like we had on iTunes (especially aroud this time of the year, where XFactor, Xmas and all major pop releases dominated the charts).

Also, can't remember any other pop act past 2014 who's made any big impact worldwide like Ariana did.


Pixie Lott's sort of pop has just gone out of fashion again. But Ariana and Dua still do very well so there is clearly a market for a version of it. But why are there so few new artists of that ilk breaking through in the last couple of years? And if we are looking at a new darker sort of pop like Billie Eilish becoming popular - well why aren't there more of her sort yet either?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
M4NGO
post Dec 16 2019, 10:57 AM
Post #6
BuzzJack Platinum Member
******
Group: Members
Posts: 11,105
Member No.: 151
Joined: 10-March 06
 


I think to make it a valid comparison you'd have to make similar lists for say 2014, 2009 and 2004 and then compare how many new pop artists there were for those years - that's if you have the time to spare of course. But in general yes I think it's definitely getting harder to launch a pop career these days, ironically pop just isn't as popular as it used to be.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
AcerBen
post Dec 16 2019, 11:37 AM
Post #7
BuzzJack Gold Member
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 2,885
Member No.: 3,429
Joined: 18-May 07
   No Gallery Pics
 


QUOTE(coi @ Dec 16 2019, 10:50 AM) *
Well you've listed 16 new 'hip-hop/rap/grime' artists there (I'm aware there are a few other examples too though), Stormzy isn't new at all since he had hits in 2015 and several of the others listed have only had one hit anyway (e.g. Lil Tecca, Arizona Zervas, and Dominic Fike who I wouldn't really class as hip-hop/rap/grime myself). Only two of those 11 pop artists you've listed have only had one hit (Dermot Kennedy and Tones and I).

It's still been a successful year for pop music but it's mostly the already established artists that dominate (Camila Cabello, Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Shawn Mendes etc).

You're right to point out that new pop artists are finding it more difficult to break through than ten years ago, but that might just be because the genre isn't really as popular as it used to be. Personally I think it's a good thing that record labels and radio stations can't force songs to be successful now because some of them get pushed way too hard when they aren't actually that good laugh.gif


Stormzy shouldn't be on there.. I thought he had his first top 40 hit in 2017.

Even if you disregard the whole list of hip-hop/rap/grime acts though, you're still left with very little new pop artists breaking through. Yes those other acts are doing fine, but why aren't labels signing more of them or managing to get those they do sign reach those heights? Why has the pop world become so small and difficult to get into?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Bjork
post Dec 16 2019, 01:32 PM
Post #8
BuzzJack Platinum Member
******
Group: Members
Posts: 13,164
Member No.: 22,665
Joined: 13-November 15
   No Gallery Pics
 


if you think pop is doing bad, look at rock/indie/alt :/
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Steve201
post Dec 16 2019, 07:40 PM
Post #9
Shakin Stevens
*******
Group: Members
Posts: 28,557
Member No.: 5,138
Joined: 29-December 07
   No Gallery Pics
 


Yeh indie is having a terrible year (decade)!
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
___∆___
post Dec 16 2019, 07:45 PM
Post #10
BuzzJack Platinum Member
******
Group: Members
Posts: 10,292
Member No.: 3,155
Joined: 25-March 07
 


I think basing a breakthrough act on chart positions is probably not the best indication anymore - there are songs getting nowhere near the Top 40 but being certified Silver and Gold.

Sam Fender for example is a breakthrough act but hasn’t troubled the Top 40 singles but has achieved a #1 Gold selling album and his #48 smash hit single ‘Hypersonic Missiles’ has just been certified Silver.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
N-S
post Dec 16 2019, 07:59 PM
Post #11
BuzzJack Gold Member
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 4,241
Member No.: 816
Joined: 23-June 06
   No Gallery Pics
 


I thought that after Sweet But Psycho, Ava Max's follow-up material would be easily successful.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Bjork
post Dec 16 2019, 08:44 PM
Post #12
BuzzJack Platinum Member
******
Group: Members
Posts: 13,164
Member No.: 22,665
Joined: 13-November 15
   No Gallery Pics
 


^if it had been good but it wasn't, her 2nd single was a bad carbon copy of there first, and that killed her momentum... single 3 was not very good either
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
ThePensmith
post Dec 16 2019, 08:44 PM
Post #13
They've had the very Tunnocks, Mary
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 4,783
Member No.: 13,208
Joined: 13-March 11
   No Gallery Pics
 


These things are all cyclical really. Always have been. Everyone thought pop bar Girls Aloud and Sugababes was good for dead in the late 00s when it was all landfill indie bands and faceless dance music. Streaming has undoubtedly made it more difficult of late though. I do think there's been some great pop acts around though, even if they're not having say, Stormzy or Lewis Capaldi levels of success.

Now United, who are Simon Fuller's new pop group (well relatively new, they've been going just over a year now) have done pretty well worldwide, and they've got some great songs like 'Legends' and 'All Day' to name a few. Just annoying that it took until September for Simon to realise you couldn't launch a pop act in this day and age without streaming, which considering how forward thinking his previous multi brand concepts like S Club and Pop Idol were was peculiar to say the least.

Four of Diamonds, who've been looked after by Peter Loraine at Fascination have had some great singles too. Also Paige Cavell who's the most recent discovery of Brian Higgins and the Xenomania team. There's still some good stuff out there it's just a case of knowing where to look.

I do believe though that we're due another turn of the cycle. I think with Little Mix's new show on BBC One coming up in the new year that will be interesting to see what's produced from that.


This post has been edited by ThePoguesmith: Dec 16 2019, 08:45 PM
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
AcerBen
post Dec 16 2019, 08:49 PM
Post #14
BuzzJack Gold Member
*****
Group: Members
Posts: 2,885
Member No.: 3,429
Joined: 18-May 07
   No Gallery Pics
 


QUOTE(ThePoguesmith @ Dec 16 2019, 08:44 PM) *
These things are all cyclical really. Always have been. Everyone thought pop bar Girls Aloud and Sugababes was good for dead in the late 00s when it was all landfill indie bands and faceless dance music. Streaming has undoubtedly made it more difficult of late though. I do think there's been some great pop acts around though, even if they're not having say, Stormzy or Lewis Capaldi levels of success.

Now United, who are Simon Fuller's new pop group (well relatively new, they've been going just over a year now) have done pretty well worldwide, and they've got some great songs like 'Legends' and 'All Day' to name a few. Just annoying that it took until September for Simon to realise you couldn't launch a pop act in this day and age without streaming, which considering how forward thinking his previous multi brand concepts like S Club and Pop Idol were was peculiar to say the least.

Four of Diamonds, who've been looked after by Peter Loraine at Fascination have had some great singles too. Also Paige Cavell who's the most recent discovery of Brian Higgins and the Xenomania team. There's still some good stuff out there it's just a case of knowing where to look.

I do believe though that we're due another turn of the cycle. I think with Little Mix's new show on BBC One coming up in the new year that will be interesting to see what's produced from that.


Listen I'm not talking about manufactured pop, I'm talking mainstream music in general. That's never been cyclical.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post


Reply to this topicStart new topic

1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:


 

Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 23rd January 2020 - 09:07 AM