Hip Hop/Rap, Trap, and the Two-Word Song Title category all reached their highest level in over a year during the month of August due in part to the rise of YouTube sensation turned mainstream star Silento, and southern-influenced yet New Jersey based Fetty Wap.
August 2015 favored heavy 808s over the vintage vibe that has been the soundtrack to the better part of a year, sending the once dominant Retro category to a 41-week low. The Inspiration/Empowerment lyrical theme category reached a 44-week high, and the Synth and Prominent Bass were the month’s key sound shapers. As for Guitar, it was represented by just one song by month’s end – Can’t Feel My Face. This is a far cry from August 2014, where almost half of the month’s songs featured prominent guitar in the mix such as All About That Bass, Am I Wrong, and Rude.
[Header 1 header=”Genres”]
August began with Pop and Hip Hop/Rap tied as the most popular primary genres, each accounting for 30% of songs. During the week of 8/8, Hip Hop/Rap reached a one-year plus high of 40% thanks to the arrival of Fetty Wap’s My Way. The genre was also represented by Silento’s Watch Me, the chart-topper See You Again, and Wap’s other top 10 hit, Trap Queen.
Pop rejoined Hip Hop/Rap at the top during the week of 8/22 thanks to the arrival of One Direction’s Drag Me Down. The month concluded with Hip Hop/Rap dropping back down to second place due to the departure of See You Again, and Pop holding steady at the top spot.
Additionally, the Rock genre dropped down to nil during the week of 8/22 due to the departure of Walk The Moon’s Shut Up And Dance, and R&B/Soul finished the month were it began, at 20% of songs.
[Header 1 header=”Sub-Genres & Influencers”]
Electropop was the top sub-genre during the first four weeks of the month, playing a role in 50% of songs. Among its representatives was the new arrival Good For You, as well as the chart-topper Bad Blood. Hip Hop/Rap, R&B/Soul and Trap were all tied at the #2 spot, each playing a role in 40% of songs.
During the last week of the month, the aforementioned sub-genres joined Electropop at the top thanks to the reentry of Good For You and The Hills. Note that this was Trap’s highest level of prominence in over a year.
On the flip side, Retro dropped to its lowest level in 41 weeks due to the departure of Shut Up And Dance. The song’s exit also resulted in New Wave dropping down to nil.
[Header 1 header=”Lead Vocal”]
The Solo Male Lead Vocal category continued its 37-week run at the top, accounting for 40% to 60% of songs throughout the month. During the week of 8/29, the top three songs in the Billboard Hot 100 featured a Solo Male Lead Vocal – Cheerleader, Can’t Feel My Face, and Watch Me.
The Duet/Group category increased to 30% of songs thanks to the arrival of My Way and Good For You. As for the Solo Female category, it held steady at just 20%, represented by Fight Song and Lean On. Note that solo female vocals haven’t fronted more than 20% of Top 10 hits for the past 23 weeks.
[Header 1 header=”Lyrical Themes”]
Love/Relationships was once again the most popular lyrical theme, playing a role in 80% of songs throughout the month either as a standalone or in conjunction with other themes.
Inspiration/Empowerment held steady at the #2 spot, increasing from 20% to 30% of songs thanks to the arrival of Drag Me Down. This was the category’s highest level in 44 weeks.
Hooking Up returned to the chart after a three-week absence thanks to the reentry of The Hills and Good For You, and Silento’s Watch Me continued to be the only song featuring a Novelty theme.
[Header 1 header=”Intros”]
The Moderately Short (0:10 – 0:19) Intro Length category was the most popular, fluctuating between 50% and 60% of songs throughout the month. The Short (0:01 – 0:09) Intro Length category followed at the #2 spot, accounting for 30% to 40% of songs. As for the Moderately Long (0:20 – 0:29) category, it’s been dormant for the past 13 weeks. Bad Blood was the only song not to contain an intro in its framework, instead opting to immediately hit the listener with the chorus.
[Header 1 header=”First Chorus”]
August began with the Moderately Late (0:40 – 0:59) First Chorus Occurrence category at the top, accounting for 40% of songs. During the week of 8/8 it dropped down to second place due to the departure of The Hills and the arrival My Way, which thrust the Early (0:01 – 0:19) category back up to the top following a one-week absence.
However, at the end of the month, the Moderately Late category was once again the most popular thanks to the reentry of The Hills and Good For You. Accounting for 50% of songs, this was the category’s highest level in seven weeks.
[Header 1 header=”Song Title Word Count”]
The Two-Word Song Title category continued its 14-week run at the top. Accounting for 70% of songs by the end of the month, it was the category’s highest level in over a year. Among its representatives were the new arrivals Lean On, The Hills, and My Way, as well as the chart-topper Bad Blood.
The other Song Title Word Count categories accounted for just one song each by the end of the month.
[Header 1 header=”Song Title Appearances”]
The 11 – 15 Song Title Appearance category’s three-month run at the top came to an end during the week of 8/29 due to the departure of Drag Me Down and See You Again. Accounting for 20% of songs, this was the category’s lowest level in 26 weeks.
In its place, the 6 – 10 Song Title Appearance category took over at the top with 30% of songs thanks to the arrival of My Way. As for the 21+ category, it was still represented by just one song – Silento’s Watch Me. Its title appears an astounding 70+ times throughout the song.
[Header 1 header=”Instrumentation”]
The Synth and Prominent Bass were once again the most popular instruments found in Top 10 charting hits. Both played a key role in shaping the sound of 70% – 90% of songs throughout the month. Acoustic Piano and Claps/Snaps were the second most popular, each playing a role in 30% – 40% of songs.
The new instrumentation category arrival of the month was Mallets, which helped to shape the sound of My Way.
[Header 2 header=”New Arrivals”]
- August 1: Lean On
- August 1: The Hills
- August 8: My Way
- August 22: Drag Me Down
- August 29: The Hills (Reentry)
- August 29: Good For You (Reentry)
[Header 2 header=”Decharted”]
- August 1: Where Are U Now
- August 1: Hey Mama
- August 8: The Hills
- August 22: Shut Up And Dance
- August 29: Drag Me Down
- August 29: See You Again