Sorry, Boomers, this study proves The Beatles were just a fad

The Beatles

Fab Four or Fad Four?

Credit: azaar94 via Flickr

You know all those books and Wikipedia entries about how The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Kinks, Freddie and the Dreamers (kidding) and other British Invasion bands revolutionized music? 

Turns out they didn't, according to a new study by some London researchers that applied data analytics to musical trends reflected in the U.S. pop charts from 1960 to 2010.

From The Guardian:

The study’s ... authors believe there is no musical evidence to suggest that the “British invasion” of the early '60s caused a revolution in the US charts at all. Rather, the music style those bands displayed – measured by properties such as chord changes and tone – was already established in the US charts before they arrived.

The researchers believe they found evidence of a culture-shaking moment in pop, though – it just happened 30 years later. The emergence of hip-hop, which crash-landed in the charts in 1991, reinvented the musical landscape like nothing before or since, the study claims.

No wonder McCartney's been hanging around with Kanye and Jay Z! He's trying to ride their coattails!

Not everyone is convinced that the science is airtight here.

“Popular music cannot be ‘measured’ in this way," The Guardian quotes Mike Brocken, a senior lecturer in music at Liverpool Hope University and director of the world’s first Beatles masters degree. "So my first instincts are to question any study that uses the dreaded data analysis.” 

(OK, what can you do with a "Beatles masters degree," anyway?)

And that's the latest from the world of "dreaded data analysis." Don't kill the messenger, Boomers.

This story, "Sorry, Boomers, this study proves The Beatles were just a fad" was originally published by Fritterati.