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Music: Popular Music Research

Popular Music Research

Hello!  Researching Popular Music poses some unique challenges: the relative rarity of musicologists who study popular music, the non-standardized genre designations, and the existing challenges of classical music research all come into play.  I created this page in the research guide to give you a head-start on finding good information on popular music.  To make things easier on you, here are some tips: 

1. Streaming services like Pandora and Spotify employ credentialed musicologists to catalog their songs.  Though the specific author is anonymous, the information listed there is reputable. 

2. Music does not exist in a vacuum.  Other disciplines are interested with the creation and impact of music as well.  You may find good information on the psychological impacts of music in PsychInfo; the ways that music affects the teenage brain by searching in Child Development & Adolescent Studies; and music as a tool of communication in Communication and Mass Media Complete. 

3. Don't forget that there are librarians and music instructors here at Longwood who can help answer your questions as well! 

Happy Research! 

Popular Music Genres

Genres by Region

Genre Dictionaries




Professional Organizations