10 Disappointing Facts About Popular Music

Warning: this could be the saddest post this year. We round up the most disappointing facts about popular music.

Ultimate Guitar

Rock music has had plenty of major hits over modern history, and a good set of artists have made their mark on culture with albums that sold millions of copies.

Even pop can generate music with integrity and talent - after all, The Beatles were huge influences in both rock and pop, and artists like Michael Jackson will always be remembered for their work.

But sadly, the world is not a fair place. Buzz Feed collected some truly disappointing facts about popular music, which we've shared below.

Make sure you're sitting down, because your indignation is about to shoot through the roof. Are you ready?

01. Creed has sold more records in the US than Jimi Hendrix

Hendrix remains one of the most influential guitarists of all time, but he's no match for Creed's 28 million US record sales. Maybe all that crazy panning on Hendrix albums is too much for some people. And sorry to the UG reading Creed fans, but Hendrix really deserves better.

02. Led Zeppelin, REM, and Depeche Mode have never had a number one single, Rihanna has 10

If the world were a perfect place, the great songwriters would sit atop the charts. Instead, Rihanna probably sells an extra 10k units every time she pulls another creepy back-bending pose. Seriously, are her arms fitted backwards?

03. Ke$ha's "Tik-Tok" sold more copies than ANY Beatles single

Ke$ha's debut single broke the record for the biggest single-week sales of all time for a female artist, selling 610,000 digital downloads in one week. John Lennon and George Harrison turned in their graves at 45rpm.

04. Flo Rida's "Low" has sold 8 million copies the same as The Beatles' "Hey Jude"

How can the lyrics "She hit da flo', next thing you know, shawty got low low low low" be as good as the wordless singalong ending on "Hey Jude"? Answer: they aren't as good - the world is simply unjust.

05. The Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling" is more popular than any Elvis or Simon & Garfunkel song

At least Garfunkel can rest easy, knowing that his name doesn't seem quite as silly next to Will.I.Am or apl.de.ap. Seriously, that's what two people from the Black Eyed Peas have named themselves.

06. Celine Dion's "Falling Into You" sold more copies than any Queen, Nirvana, or Bruce Springsteen record

The same applies to Shania Twain's "Come On Over", proving that there's big money in making boring music. Hey, why did Celine Dion cross the road? To get to the middle.

07. Katy Perry holds the same record as Michael Jackson for most number one singles from an album

Both artists had five number one singles from one album, but only one artist could moonwalk. And since moonwalks trump dressing up like bubblegum, MJ wins.

08. Barbra Streisand has sold more records (140 million) than Pearl Jam, Johnny Cash, and Tom Petty combined

140 million? Are you kidding? Is Barbra Streisand responsible for global warming, with all that CD production? Maybe Streisan's real job is to help pad out the gaps on shelves between Celine Dion and Shania Twain records.

09. The cast of "Glee" has had more songs chart than The Beatles

But The Beatles don't care, because they didn't need to resort to extreme social engineering and produce advertisements that last a full hour every week. And wrote their own songs. In fact, The Beatles pretty much invented the concept of artists writing their own songs.

10. This guy exists.

No comment. Though on a side note, can you believe cardigans came back into fashion?

Well, that was upsetting. Join us in mourning and post your disappointment in the comments.

384 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I agree with most of the points on the article, but it was written in such a douchey and immature way....
    Why don't you just marry the beatles if you love them so much op. Plus the real disappointment is that you're measuring music by how much money it makes, music ain't about money. And finally... just to check, no-one wrote music before the beatles? Okay, good to get my facts straight
    I honestly don't understand how this is disappointments in music. It basically says "new music is more popular than old music" and uses the Beatles as a scapegoat more often than not. Flame me if you really want to, but I don't understand the universal appeal of the Beatles, sure, they're a good band, but they're not the most amazing musical thing to ever happen to the world. They were like 4 Biebers themselves at the time anyway, they had teenage girls everywhere freaking out like he does today. I'm not trying to justify anything about modern music, I'm just saying that of course new music will outsell old stuff. Besides that, the average listener wants something accessible to hear, they don't want a 90 minute Hendrix solo when they can have a 3 minute Lady GaGa song that's a lot easier to "digest".
    pathetic article, made by petty pathetic "rockers" just sad really. get over it and grow the hell up
    We live in exponential times. Of course Pop artists of today sell more than pop artist of yesterday. 50 years from now, people are going to be bitching that some new pop diva sold more records than Gaga. Besides, imagine how jazz/fusion artists feel when "pop" bands like Metallica sell more than them. Oh wait...
    Also, MJ's moonwalks may beat Katy Perry's outfits but nothing can beat Katy Perry's tits.
    ds24601 wrote: Typical close-minded, elitist comments. Maybe pop music is popular because it's what the majority of casual music listeners like? It doesn't make you stupid or in anyway inferior to other music lovers. I like pop music (some of it). It's the same with metal--I don't instantly like all metal music because I'm ****ing br00tal, I like the music if it's good and if I don't I don't listen to it. Queen, who are my favourite band and one of the bands mentioned on the right, wrote songs in pretty much every style imaginable, including a number of great pop songs which became incredibly successful. And aren't The Beatles essentially a pop act? Do I like most modern pop acts? Not really, but that's not because I'm better than those who do; it's because I have a different (read: not better) taste in music than them. It also must be said that people are saying about how no one will remember these pop acts in years to come, which may be true, but will people remember a lot of the new metal acts in years to come? Probably not and rightfully so: most of them are as generic as the acts being criticised here. J
    You sir, are my hero.
    Ah, just saw it, it's from Buzz Feed instead...wonder where they got it from.
    While I agree with most of this article, it is incredibly biased....
    **** you ug, you consistently fail to better my day.. only piss me off, this isn't news, post something interesting. dnr
    The point of article = mass is f*cking stupid. Modern pop music's simply first person shooter of music. Advertising matters more than the quality itself. I also like pop music by the way, I just wish it had more meaningful content.
    I thought Zeppelin didn't do singles.... so that one doesn't count Apart from that I loved this, the last one cracked me up
    i agree a MILLION % rock music should be the top of everything! pop music is bull. there is no message behind it no true substance... to me its not even music, rock is the only true music! i hate that all these kids come out of nowhere and make just one shit song and top all the charts and all the people love em. its mindlessness! u cant fix stupid. besides these kids have nothing to offer, their barely in high school some, they have no life experience and therefor they have nothing to give! rockers are older, way more experience! most have been through harsh times in their lives which gives them a lot to write about and lots to offer. its one of the reasons rock is so great. rock is about real life reality. pop is about some fantasy in what they perceive to be a perfect world. i dont care for anyone's perception but my own. i dont want a fantasy! its not a perfect world. i want truth and reality. and something not by a kid!!! i admit rock has its own downfalls like everything else, but at least some rockers admit it and make up for it unlike pop where their so unaware! the record industry is dying, but not the music industry. they are 2 separate things! no one buys cd's anymore its all gone internet. with that being said the record companies make no $ and it gives the music its time to shine and expand. they record companies are losing the control they once had on artists and their music, and that control has shifted to the artists which is where it belongs! but there is a lot of shit going on! radio sucks cause its all pop, all the good rock/heavy metal stations are being replaced with pop stations... radio isnt about playing good music i guess... pop is all about image... rock is centered around great music not some phony image i also admit creed is one of my fav bands, my personal opinion (i dont car how u feel about them) their great! ur right mustaine24 that is a bad pix, but i was surprised they sold more than jimi. and its not about $$$ its about music! there are a ton of great bands out there that should replace these pop ****ers but its not a perfect world and i think these bands are fine with where they are. cause all they want to do is make great music they love, not be on top of every chart
    I've been using this site for years, but I feel more and more compelled everyday to kiss it off for good. I read this exact article a VERY long while ago on a different site. It's literally a copy and paste. Even though I agree with a lot of this stuff, I honestly can't stand biased 'news' sites. I hate Justin Bieber, but that last one was just stupid. Thanks UG, keep trying to win us over with your stupid propaganda.
    Krieger91 wrote: Although, I don't really agree with the "Beatles invented the concept of artists writing their own songs"
    I never agreed with that concept myself. Also, it should be noted that Led Zeppelin never released any singles.
    **** singles. Buy The ****ing album. That's the issue with the music industry these days.
    I'm going on a limb as well. Have you heard Creed's guitarist play? Seriously? Tremonti is a badass. So are the rest of the musicians in the band. Scott may be a dickhead but you can't deny that he can't write or sing. You morons have lost all sense of what music is. Music is what you feel. You don't play what some 14 year old on a forum says to play. You play what you feel. That's what Creed does. I love that band and am not scared to admit it in front of x amount of metal guitarists. They haven't gone anywhere. They still charted with Full Circle in 2009, and have a new CD coming out in 2012. People hate on them like they do Nickelback: Just because it's the cool thing to do. Btw, they picked the worst possible picture of Creed for that article.
    Why can't I go anywhere online without see Bieber. Stop talking about someone you hate .****. I don't bring up shitty ass screamo every ****ing 10 seconds. Stop bringing up that kid.
    OK, lets just relax a minute. Record companies are selling to a different demographic these days. I'm pretty sure the industry is run by 14yr old girls. The good news is in 20 yrs we will still be listening to Led Zeplin, Jimi Hendrix, and all the other classic bands, while all the other pop music will be lost to all our memories...in fact, I already forgot about Creed until this article.
    In the days of Elvis or The Beatles there was no INTERNET ! So if you wanted to be known by people in Asia(for example), you'd have to go there and sing, not post a youtube video. FFS !
    Feels like an attempt to garner respect to me IMO. Like the boss who tries to be friendly, or the random kids on YouTube saying stuff popular with the viewers and tagging on 'like If you agree' at the back.
    JammyP 93
    I know it is not the point of the article but Kesha looks hot in that picture..I would.
    Congratulations on this article. It really feels like I'm on youtube arguing with 15 year olds. Awful, people need to grow up.
    All of these are "X has sold more copies than Y." Music's not about the money, dudes. PS: Cardigans are awesome. Bright purple ones, not so much.
    We truly have lost a generation, maybe even more than just one, and this article proves it!
    This article is sad but true. Although, Pop music is (obviosly) popular. And I like having metal/alternative/rock music to myself. Its not popular, but then it wouldn't be so influential to the few it does get to. The last part was hilarious, by the way >.
    TJ1991 wrote: I can't remember where I've seen this, but I have quite recently. At least credit whoever you stole it from, UG.
    They did. They said they got it from Buzz Feed.
    Cara Gato
    Record sales are one thing, but how many of these bands/people in the list have had an impact on the world such as Michael Jackson, Jimi Hendrix etc? Anyone can come up with some mindless dribble, but how many can influence future generations even after many years of their deaths?