A good question: Is Spotify making songs shorter?

I had a conversation the other day with studio owner in which he lamented the fact that technology is going too far when it comes to driving the evolution of songwriting.

“Platforms like Spotify are changing everything,” he said. “Songwriters and producers know they won’t get paid unless the listener makes it past 30 seconds, so they throw everything up front. Shorter intros, starting with the chorus, half a dozen hooks. It’s ruining music!”

Quartz points out something, too.

“Popular music is shrinking. From 2013 to 2018, the average song on the Billboard Hot 100 fell from 3 minutes and 50 seconds to about 3 minutes and 30 seconds. Six percent of hit songs were 2 minutes 30 seconds or shorter in 2018, up from just 1% five years before.”


“It’s not just popular rappers. Country songs are shrinking too. Eric Church and Jason Aldean have been nearly constant with the number of song on each of their albums, but their songs keep getting shorter and shorter.”

This is worth a read.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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