The Music That Will Define Our Decade

The Music That Will Define Our Decade

In 2025, we'll look back and think of two things: EDM and Trap.

When we analyze music history, it's easy to organize changes in sound and popularity by decade. People can identify the sound of the '50s, for example, as something entirely different than the sound of the '60s, or the '70s, or the '80s.

It's an interesting phenomenon, but for the most part, popular music tastes don't suddenly change in correspondence with the opening or closing of a decade. Rather, I think our tendency to divide music up on a decade by decade basis is simply an effect of our natural inclination to categorize things.

In reality, popular music genres and sounds often develop slowly over time, starting in underground scenes, and eventually exploding into the mainstream. And when that genre has peaked in its popularity, it won't die when a digit changes in the calendar, it will taper out into the next decade, or might even remain for decades to come.

Sometimes, however, the decades do align with the close-out of a musical epoch. Take The Beatles for example, their career began in 1963 and ended, neatly, at the close-out of the decade in 1970. Disco, the dance genre that defined the '70s, is often thought to have ended on July 12, 1979, when an anti-disco demonstration turned into "The Day Disco Died."

Exceptions aside, the bands and sounds that define a decade don't suddenly die out at a decades closing. You'll still hear plenty of bands today making music that we listen to and think "Oh, this sounds like it could be from the '80s..." or the '60s, and so on and so forth. The modern rock band Greta Van Fleet sounds like Led Zeppelin, and Belle & Sebastian in the last two decades were making the same kind of folk-pop that Peter, Paul, and Mary were making in the '60s.

Still, while the division of music into decades may not be a wholly accurate method, it remains an incredibly useful tool for observing changing trends around us.

Using this tool, we can already identify the 2000s as having its own unique sound. When it comes to pop music, there's something distinctly "2000s" about the pop of artists like P!nk, Kelly Clarkson, Alicia Keys, and Beyonce. It's a decade also defined by auto-tune and rap-pop infusion; songs like "Down" by Jay Sean and Lil Wayne, "Replay" by Iyaz, and pretty much everything by Akon. Rap-Rock (Limp Bizkit, Papa Roach, Linkin Park) and R&B of the likes of Usher also seem to strongly touch our nostalgia bone.

But what about this decade? It's already 8 years in. What will we say next decade was the sound of this one?

I think one of the most important developments of the decade has been the bass drop, or simply "the drop." We've seen the drop break into popularity through dubstep and EDM, and ultimately seed its way into pop and hip-hop. It's everywhere now, and it's a distinctly '2010s phenomenon.

When it comes to genres though, this decade has been defined by two major sounds.

The '2010s trap sound, pioneered by Atlanta-based rappers like Future and Gucci Mane, have made hip-hop more popular than its ever been before. So popular, in fact, that hip-hop has overtaken rock as the number one genre in the United States.

We've even seen trap seed itself into pop music by way of major hits like Camila Cabello's "Havana," which featured trap artist Young Thug. And the trap machine isn't showing any signs of slowing down, it's still exploding in the Soundcloud scene through rising stars like Lil Pump and XXXTENTACION.

Trap's popularity is undeniable. Just look at Stony Brook University's last few on-campus concerts: Fetty Wap, Post Malone, Future, and 21 Savage. In fact, as I write this article, 8 out of the top 10 songs on Spotify's Top 50 US Chart are hip-hop tracks, and 6 of those 8 are trap songs. Hip-hop's triumphant rise to the top of the charts will certainly be a decade-defining fact, and the Atlanta-based sound that made it popular will become an integral part of our collective memory of these years.

EDM is the second genre that has come to define this decade. David Guetta, Calvin Harris, Avicii, Zedd, Skrillexthis is the sound of our decade. EDM influences seem to have found its way into everything these days. Countless major artists have changed their original sound to adopt EDM trends; Maroon 5, Katy Perry, One Republic, Coldplay, Eminem, Linkin Park, and so many others, have released albums recently that are steeped in heavy EDM influences. When you see a particular sound cross genre boundaries so heavily, it becomes more than just a single genre, it becomes age-defining.

So, all that considered, what do these changing trends say about our generation? It's been said that the music of the '60s reflects the "peace and love" ethos of the counter-culture, the music of the '80s reflects the excess of the age, and the rise of grunge in the '90s comes as a rebellious reaction to the heightened conservatism of the '80s.

So what about the '2010s?

Honestly, I have no idea. Maybe hip-hop's rise reveals something about race relations or its cult of luxury something about our generation too. Or maybe the popularity of EDM is an example of the growing ubiquity of the digital age. I don't know, it's not my place to say.

All I know is this: in 2025, when we're looking back on this decade in terms of its music, two things might come to mind: Migos and The Chainsmokers. There may not be any deeper meaning than that.

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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To the guy that shot my brother...


To the guy that shot my brother,

On January 9, 2019 my families entire life changed with one phone call. The phone call that my little brother had been shot in the face, no other details. We didn't need any other details. The woman on the phone who called us in full panic told us where he was so we went, as soon as possible. I don't think it helped that not even 10 min prior I talked to Zach on the phone.. kind of irritated with him, and the ONE TIME I didn't say 'I love you' as we hung up. Could've been the last time we ever spoke.. I remember pulling up to the hospital thinking 'this can't be real' 'it's not our Zach' 'this is just a dream Sarah, WAKE UP' I'd close my eyes really tight just to open them, I was still in the hospital emergency parking lot. I could still hear the ambulance sirens coming. It was all real.

The day our life's changed was definitely a test of faith. A test of how strong we were, as a family. I sat in that waiting room ready to see the damage that has been done to my sweet baby brother. Because at that point we had no idea how lucky he got. That glimpse of seeing Zach will haunt me forever. How helpless I felt in that exact moment frequently wakes me up from these horrific dreams I've been having ever since that day. That is a moment burned into my me and families brain forever.

You always hear about these things in the movies or on the news, a house being shot up, someone shooting another innocent person, not to care if they died on your watch. But we found ourselves on the news.. We have been confined to the hospital since that day. Running on barely any sleep, taking shifts of sleep so we don't make ourselves sick taking care of Zach. Watching him suffer. Undergoing surgeries, to repair the damage you did.

Before I proceed let me tell you a little something about the man you shot.

Zachary Keith Wright. A blonde hair blue eyed boy. Who could potentially be the most annoying human on the planet (possibly coming from his sister). A man who loves his God first, loves his family second. Perfect by no means, but almost perfect to me. A 19 year old who was to graduate high school this month. After graduation he was prepping to leave for Marine boot camp in the summer.. being in the military has been Zach's dream since he could talk. Literally. Running around, playing war with underwear on our heads, and finger guns. Some would say we looked like natural born assassins.. growing up he has been a country boy. Let me tell ya country to the core. He loves this country like he loves his family. He believes in helping people, taking charge in what's right, and never leaving a brother behind. He's lived by that his whole life. Until now....

The day you shot him. The day not only did you change my brothers life, you changed his families life too. The day you almost ripped my brother out of this world... for what? A misunderstanding? Because you've let something take ahold of your life that you can't let go you're willing to kill someone innocent over? Luckily for him, his guardian angels were protecting him in your time of cowardice. There were 3 times that day he should've died, the time you shot him, the time you tried to shoot him again as he stared you directly in the face, (even tho he couldn't talk I know you could read his eyes, and he still intimidated you. That's why you tried to pull the trigger again) and the time he was running out of the house. But he lived. A man who was shot in the face, didn't lay there helpless, didn't scream in agony. That MAN walked to the neighbors to get help. Why? Because he's a MAN, and because he's on this earth for a reason.

It's gonna sound a little strange not only to you, but the audience who is reading this. I must say thank you. Even in this situation, this was the best outcome we could get. He gets to live. He will make a full recovery. He will graduate. And he will go off into the Marines. You united my family together. Closer than ever. Thank you. You tested our faith and brought us closer to our God. Thank you. Because of your moment of weakness, you showed us what prayer could do. Heal anything. Thank you. This was a bump in the road, and a helluva way to kick off our year of 2019. But here we are.. all laying in the hospital. I'm looking around as mom is sleeping in her recliner chair exhasted but still here, Zach his awake playing his xbox all hooked up to machines, fighting to heal and get better. And of course I'm writing this letter to you.

See you in trial,

From the girl whose brother you shot.

'Fight the good fight' - 1 Tim 6:12 🤟🏼💙

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23 Things That ~Barely~ Run Through A Girl's Mind During Her First Workout In, Like, Forever

Why did I do this to myself?


It's the beginning of the semester and that means half of the students on campus have decided that we are going to go back to the gym after their workout routine fell through last semester. It's been months since we've stepped foot in the gym, but we are ready to attack it and get fit. That is until we get there and start going.

1. How did I get to the gym? Didn't I walk here? That should count as exercise

2. Why am I here?

3. Are these clothes tighter than they were last time?

4. Why is every single machine full? What am I supposed to do?

5. Is everyone looking at me?

6. I can't remember where anything is here

7. Okay, I am going to set this at the easiest level

8. Can I go home yet?

9. Is 3 minutes long enough? No, darn it.

10. How many calories have I burned? Only 10 are you kidding me!

11. Why is everyone else here going so hard? I look like a slacker

12. I am so sweaty right now

13. Maybe I should get a smoothie as a reward for working out

14. I am literally dying right now. I am about to drop dead

15. Only 5 more minutes to go. I've got this!

16. I don't got this

17. Why do people come here every day?

18. Last minute I'm going to go so hard right now

19. Just kidding that two seconds was good enough. I'm going to cool down for the last 58

20. Hallelujah, praise Jesus, I am done!

21. I am so tired

22. My body is so sore

23. I can't believe I have to walk home now. I've already done my exercising for the day

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