Contributed by Potpot:
Exactly 5 years ago, ‘Baby One More Time’ by Britney Spears entered the mainstream U.S. radio airplay. From then on, the bubblegum pop era, waiting for resurection since the early 80s, started to balloon and swallow the whole music industry, with such names as Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, Nsync, and Christina Aguilera… and the rest was history.
However, at the turn of the century, bubblegum pop seemed to have reached its peak and started to explode. Critics have branded 2001 as the Year the Bubble of Pop Exploded. True enough, mainstream radio tilted to the more urban, hip-hop, r&b tunes, brought about by J.Lo, Murder Inc., Eminem, Nelly, and just lately, 50 Cent and Beyonce.
Nonetheless, many observers in the music scene have noted the significant rise in pop/rock/alternative radio songs entering mainstream top 40. Factually speaking, almost half of the songs in Billboard 100 this week are pop/rock/alternative songs. This seems to balance the other half represented by the more urban/hip-hop/r&b tunes. Modern pop or 2003 pop seemed to find way through the likes of Hilary Duff, Fountains of Wayne, Clay Aiken, Stacie Orrico, and oldies like Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. This resurgence, according to some was opened by that pop-rock phenomenon of late 2002 named Avril Lavigne.
Whether pop is really making a comeback, only time can tell. Sooner or later, we will know the answer as more and more pop tunes balance the music spectrum in 2004.