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The Pudding: How Music Taste Evolved

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In August of 1958, the song "Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu" by Italian musician and actor Domenico Modugno was the number one song on the U.S. Billboard Chart. Exactly ten years later, that honor went to the song "People Got to Be Free" by The Rascals. Exactly 50 years after that, in August 2008, Rihanna's "Disturbia" took the top Billboard slot. Visual journalist Matt Daniels of The Pudding, in collaboration with the Los Angeles-based design studio Use All Five, has created this highly enjoyable multimedia feature that allows visitors to explore all songs that entered the Billboard Top Five from August 1958 through October 2015. When visitors enter this website, they will initially be introduced to music from the year 1997. From here, visitors can change the year and month via a timeline that appears at the bottom of the screen. Once visitors select a start month and hit play, they will hear a clip of the song that was #1 at that time. Visitors will also see the four songs that accompanied that song in the Billboard's top five. As time passes, visitors will see new songs enter and leave the top five and hear a (sometimes disjointed) medley of songs that hit the #1 position over time. Users may also search for specific artists on a sidebar. This option reveals, for instance, that Diana Ross was in the top five a total of ten times in her career: first, in 1967 for The Supremes' "Reflections" and, most recently, in 1981 for "Endless Love." Collectively, this tool offers a fun way to rediscover songs and explore how popular music has evolved over time.
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Scout Publication
Date of Scout Publication 2018-03-16
Archived Scout Publication URL https://scout.wisc.edu/report/2018/0316

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