With the emergence of social media and music sharing phenomena, the music industry has begun to take a new form. As always, artists—with their powerful lyrics and bold fashion trends—help define our culture. We flock to the web, in search of the latest music gossip and scour music videos for the newest dance moves. Here are a few of the most memorable trends of the past decade.
A Decade of Boy Bands
After The Backstreet Boys and O' Town, we thought we had said goodbye to one of the longest-running trends in music. However, a new generation of teen heartthrobs shows us that the boy band era is alive and well. Although we may never again see the ridiculously outlandish album sales of The Beatles and The Jackson 5, the Jonas Brothers and One Direction have certainly made their mark on this decade.
Adele and Taylor Swift helped level the playing field for female artists. Immediately after the release of her third album in 2015, Adele became a number-one bestseller for the third time, earning millions in accumulative sales before the year ended. She surpassed Taylor Swift, who was expected to have the biggest album that year after debuting at number-one on the billboards and selling a record-shattering 1.287 million album copies the first week. Both women outperformed Eminem, Jay Z, and Justin Bieber and could be on their way to becoming two of the most best-selling artists in modern music history.
A Victory for Vintage
The "new vintage" trend, presenting as a vague nostalgia for a simpler time coupled with plenty of flannel and wide-rimmed glasses, has been dominating parts of the music industry for years now. It has ushered in the revival of decades-old styles and brought folk instruments into the limelight. Folksy tunes can now be heard on popular radio stations and more bands are starting to embrace acoustic music, replacing bass guitars with upright basses for a more mellow sound.
After gaining traction following its 2005 launch, YouTube wasted claiming its stake as the largest video-based social media company. Fueled by its massive worldwide audience, the Google-owned platform has been increasing its own popularity by launching pop sensations like Austin Mahone, Carly Rae Jepsen, Five Seconds of Summer, and Tori Kelly into the spotlight.
The EDM Takeover
This pulse-thumping, bass-driven musical style seems to have materialized from the ashes of a forgotten 80s and 90s dance era. EDM (Electronic Dance Music), spilling into virtually every genre, is rapidly becoming the premier choice for club and festival-style remixes. A music teacher who earned their master's in music education online says EDM is now one of the most widely listened-to genres in the world. Since its explosion into the 2000s, it has firmly established itself as a force to be reckoned with—especially among young audiences.
The past ten years of music has been among the most historic. As we celebrate the legacies of many of the world's most beloved and influential artists, like Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson and Prince, we also look to the next musical trends set to dominate social media.