Pop

Who would be brave enough to attempt a definition of pop? Research shows that many have tried—both respectfully and sarcastically—but most fall at one of two fences. The first is ‘the circular argument’. It runs like this: pop music came from blues and R&B roots, embraced popular song forms, and now includes anything at all that people respond to en masse. Pop music is thus defined by being popular. The second requires a book—or even a series—covering technological developments (transistor radios, 45 rpm singles), social and economic change (the emergence of the teenagers as a marketi...

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