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The Penndulum

The Penndulum

America is Wrapped up in Music

Heidi Landis
Phone displaying Spotify Wrapped

If you heard the Lyrics, “Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, But here’s my number, so call me, maybe,” you would most likely know these lyrics were part of the song “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen. It turns out 76% of teenagers in America know this song too. Although the stereotypical thought is that different areas of the United States listen to different kinds of music, the opposite is actually true. With the assumption that southern states listen to country music, southwestern states listen to rap, and many northern states listen to pop or indie, it is easy to think music taste solely depends on where you live. However, in comparing the infamous Spotify Wrapped of 2023 for students at various high schools in America and that of 2023 for the United States, it becomes clear that music taste among teenagers is consistent nationwide.

Whether due to trends found on social media or simply commonality between American teenagers, the popular genres, artists, and songs are strikingly similar when looking at various high schools in America and listeners in the United States as a whole. The top three tracks in the United States, according to Spotify Wrapped, are “Last Night” by Morgan Wallen, “Kill Bill” by SZA, and “Flowers” by Miley Cyrus, aligning perfectly with the top United States genres of 2023, country and pop. Some popular songs at Pennridge High School, according to a voluntary poll taken by its students, include “Flower Shops” and “Everything I Love” by Morgan Wallen and “Holy Roller” by Zach Bryan. These songs are also a good representation of the nationwide country music trend.

Looking at genres from a more focused perspective, from the poll of Spotify listeners at Pennridge High School, country, rap, and pop are the most popular. To change our focus to teenagers in other areas of the country, Amanda Goldstein, a high school senior and California resident, says, “My top genre from 2023 is pop,” and College Freshman Andrew Nields, who resided in both Northern Virginia and Washington DC during 2023 says, “My Spotify Wrapped shows I listened to rap and hip-hop the most with my top artists being Drake and Baby Smoove.”

Drake, the most popular rap artist in America in 2023, was a runner-up for the overall most-streamed artist, following number one, Taylor Swift, and just ahead of number three, Morgan Wallen. Cole Gehlert, a Senior at Pennridge High School, says that his most listened-to artist this past year was Morgan Wallen, and Goldstein explains that her top two artists were Drake and Taylor Swift. Neilds adds that Drake also appears in his list of top three artists, showing that the almost 3,000-mile distance between the East and West Coast does not mean a different taste in artists. Considering the almost perfect match between top artists of individual high schoolers and that of the whole country, it is clear that music really can connect a nation.

Even with the small margin of difference between the Spotify music trends of specific high schoolers and the trends of the country as a whole, we can tell that music taste is not dependent on where you go to school or what part of the country you live in. Instead, music can be seen in a new light, earning more value and appreciation because it has the power to unite a nation in a spirited way.

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About the Contributors
Lindsey Campione, Student Writer
Lindsey Campione, Grade 12. Interests/Hobbies include field hockey, NHS, Key Club, online shopping, vacationing, going out for food, and spending time with friends and family. Lindsey plans to attend Messiah University to study nursing and play field hockey.
Heidi Landis, Student Writer
Heidi Landis, Grade 12. Interests include fashion, hiking, traveling, Unified club, and sports. Heidi plans to attend the University of Delaware or Thomas Jefferson University to study Fashion merchandising.

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