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TUESDAY, October 04, 2022
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The Beatles fall through the generational gap

The Beatles fall through the generational gap

FRIDAY, August 19, 2022

At least one in every three members of Gen Z does not know a band called The Beatles existed, a recent study found.

Radio manufacturer Roberts Radio conducted a survey to see how music travels through generations and if some old popular songs can still be someone’s favourite.

The study covered 2,000 respondents in the UK, including members of Gen Z (born between the mid-1990s and early 2010s). They were asked how familiar they were with some stalwarts of music.

The results were:

  • Aretha Franklin: 36.64%
  • U2: 40.09%
  • The Supremes: 40.09%
  • Elvis Costello: 41.38%
  • Bee Gees: 41.81%
  • Phil Collins: 42.24%
  • Beach Boys: 42.24%
  • Blondie: 46.55%
  • Bon Jovi: 51.72%
  • Pink Floyd: 51.72%
  • Tina Turner: 53.45%
  • David Bowie: 53.88%
  • Prince: 56.03%
  • Paul McCartney: 57.76%
  • Madonna: 62.07%
  • Queen: 66.81%
  • Whitney Houston: 67.24%
  • Elvis Presley: 67.24%
  • The Beatles: 68.97%

Though many people appeared to have at least heard of the King of Rock ’n’ Roll Elvis, Whitney Houston, Queen and The Beatles, few had recognised Aretha Franklin, U2 or the Supremes.

Meanwhile, 57 per cent of the respondents said they wanted old classics to be played on the radio, 36 per cent preferred to search for older numbers themselves, while the rest said they found it difficult to relate to old songs.

The study also asked the Silent Generation (aged over 74) how familiar they were with modern artists. The results were:

  • AJ Tracey: 0.93%
  • Olivia Rodrigo: 1.85%
  • Doja Cat: 1.85%
  • Post Malone: 2.78%
  • Cardi B: 3.78%
  • BTS: 4.63%
  • Aitch: 5.56%
  • Dave: 7.41%
  • Dua Lipa: 11.11%
  • Drake: 12.96%
  • Nicki Minaj: 13.89%
  • Billie Eilish: 25%
  • Destiny’s Child: 30.56%
  • Eminem: 32.41%
  • Bruno Mars: 32.41%
  • Harry Styles: 34.26%
  • Justin Bieber: 35.19%
  • Ariana Grande: 37.96%
  • Taylor Swift: 40.74%
  • Beyonce: 47.22%
  • Lady Gaga: 53.70%
  • Ed Sheeran: 61.11%

Though the names Ed Sheeran, Lady Gaga and Beyonce are familiar to most members of the Silent Generation, very few know who AJ Tracey, Olivia Rodrigo or even Doja Cat are.

Meanwhile, only 18 per cent said they found new music enjoyable.

The study also found that only 30 per cent of people listen to chart-toppers on the radio, while the rest preferred to listen to their own choices.