Song popularity and processing fluency of lyrics

Melvill-Smith, Sorcha, Krause, Amanda E., and North, Adrian C. (2023) Song popularity and processing fluency of lyrics. Psychology of Music, 51 (3). pp. 986-1000.

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Several studies show that a concept or object is more popular when it is easier to process. The present research applies this notion of processing fluency to the lyrics of all 271 top 5 songs on the United Kingdom chart for each week from 1999 to 2014. The processing fluency of the lyrics was computer scored for readability, presence of rhyme, and complexity, and popularity was assessed in terms of peak chart position and duration of tenure on the chart. After controlling for the energy of the musical component of the song, analyses showed that factors relating to the processing fluency of the lyrics predicted peak popularity but not duration of chart tenure. Significant relationships were observed between peak popularity and both rhyme saturation and basic lyric readability properties.

Item ID: 76096
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1741-3087
Keywords: pop music, pop songs, processing fluency, lyrics, popularity, readability, rhyming, psychology of music, social and applied psychology of music, music psychology, song lyrics, DICTION
Copyright Information: © The Author(s) 2022
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2022 00:04
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5205 Social and personality psychology > 520505 Social psychology @ 60%
36 CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING > 3603 Music > 360399 Music not elsewhere classified @ 40%
SEO Codes: 13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1301 Arts > 130102 Music @ 40%
28 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 2801 Expanding knowledge > 280121 Expanding knowledge in psychology @ 60%
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