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Nashville, TN


Casey Black's blog about singer songwritering.

Ryan Morgan's Annual Torturefest

Christy Mansell

Ryan Morgan laments his aging, and pop music’s failure to age with him:

“Just finished my annual tradition of making myself listen to the Billboard Top 20 Songs of the year just ended. Summary: nobody writes verses any more, and I’m getting old, and pop music hasn’t changed much at all since 2004, both in terms of the way the songs sound and the actual people who are performing them.”

I try (kind of) hard to like pop music. My wife sings and dances to it in the car, and I wish I could do that. You’d have to be stupid not to recognize some of the great infectious little (actually, big) melodies in pop music. Why, some are beautiful like diamonds in the sky. But I agree with Ryan, verses are kaput.

I wrote a song called Radio Hit when I was a confused, religious, moral 20 year-old asshole. It was a genius piece of horribleness–a screed against “audio porn”–the “hit” in the title being the violent kind (get it??). It had a lyric that raged against “midriffs and their melodies,” which is hilarious now, as it’s cringe-worthy writing, and I quite like midriffs now that I don’t hate my own desires. Anyhow, there was one line in there that might be salvageable, in the bridge:

Thank you for teaching me a brand new meaning of pop/Pop, you’re gone

Which is to say, pop songs these days don’t feel like they’ll last. They ain’t timeless. Maybe ageless, but not timeless.