Bubblegum pop  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
guilty pleasure

Bubblegum pop is a style of pop music marked by sweetness, pep and charm rather than depth or complexity. Prolific bubblegum creators included Neil Bogart and Giorgio Moroder's early disco, leading to the rise of acts including Donna Summer and The Village People.


Essentially, bubblegum pop evolved from the other popular American musical forms that preceded and accompanied it, such as rhythm and blues and doo-wop. Bubblegum pop is also reminiscent of pre-rock novelty songs such as the WWII era "Abba Dabba Honeymoon" and "The Hut Sut Song," which hit the charts in 1951, as well as hipster music like Slim Gaillard's "Cement Mixer (Puti Puti)".

Seminal rock and roll numbers, such as Little Richard's "Tutti Frutti" with its nonsense rhyming couplets (replacing the original vulgar lyrics), also influenced what would come later. This hybrid of R&B, garage rock, novelty songs, and nursery rhymes later surfaced in songs like "Wooly Bully" (by Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs, 1965), which emphasized a hard-driving Tex-Mex beat and absurd lyrics.

Critics of bubblegum pop maintain that the music is devoid of artistic merit and that the performers are "groomed" by record labels to depend on physical appearance as opposed to musical or artistic talent. In these cases, terms such as cheesy pop or simply cheese are often used to refer to this music pejoratively. Some critics also maintain that bubblegum pop is not created out of a desire to be artistically creative, but simply to produce something that sells - a process that results in what has become termed manufactured pop, also used in the pejorative.

Nonetheless, it has proven a viable commercial enterprise, with record sales continuing to thrive. Individual singles, however, often only remain on music charts for a brief period of time - thus is the transient nature of bubblegum pop.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Bubblegum pop" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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