Welcome to November 2018’s Then and Now, a comparison of compositional characteristics for songs that landed in the Hot 100 Top 10 during the months of November 2018, 2017 and 2016.
For a playlist of these songs, scroll down to the bottom of the page.
Last month there were 14 songs that charted in the Top 10 of the Hot 100, two of which occupied the top spot – Maroon 5’s Girls Like You, featuring Cardi B and Ariana Grande’s Thank U, Next.
While both songs capitalize on the popularity of Hip Hop in the mainstream, they go against the grain for being predominantly Pop, which accounted for just 25% of the Top 10 as a primary genre compared to 50% Hip Hop during the month.
At this time last year there were also 14 songs that charted in the Top 10. Hip Hop artist Post Malone was on top with Rockstar the entire month, capturing people’s attention with its dark, hypnotic vibe and one of the most captivating vocal hooks of the year, “I’ve been f**kin’ hoes and poppin’ pillies man, I feel just like a Rockstar.”
Pop as a primary genre was more popular than Hip Hop, however almost all of the representative songs had some sort of Hip Hop influence, such as Camila Cabello & Young Thug’s Havana, Demi Lovato’s Sorry Not Sorry, and Imagine Dragons’ Thunder.
Going back further to November 2016, you guessed it – there were 14 songs that charted in the Top 10. The Chainsmokers / Halsey collaboration Closer was on top for the first three weeks, representing the Dance/Electronic boom that had just peaked in Q3, along with hits such as Cold Water and Let Me Love You, both of which feature Justin Bieber. Rae Sremmurd’s Black Beatles, featuring Gucci Mane hit #1 at the end of the month, standing out from the pack with its New Wave / Retro 1980s qualities.
Pop as a primary genre was still on top, accounting for 29% of songs. However, it was followed close behind by Hip Hop, R&B, and Dance, all of which accounted for 21% of the Top 10.
The Hot 100 Top 10 at the Compositional Level
Below is a comparison of select compositional characteristics for songs that charted in the Hot 100 Top during the months of November 2016, 2017, and 2018.
Primary Genres (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Influences (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Major vs. Minor (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Average Tempo (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Average First Chorus Occurrence (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Single vs. Multiple Lead Vocalists (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Lead Vocal Delivery (Nov 2018 /Nov 2017 / Nov 2016)
Subscribers can access hundreds of fully interactive compositional trend graphs in the Hit Songs Deconstructed platform. Filter by date range, primary genre, peak chart position, drill down to see the songs behind each data point, view each song’s compositional characteristics, and more.
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Below are three Spotify playlists with the songs that charted in the Billboard Hot 100 Top 10 during November 2018, 2017, 2016.