The Return of Talking Time

Go Back   The Return of Talking Time > Talking about media > Talking about music and podcast

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 12-31-2016, 05:52 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default The Millennial Whoop

I'd been trying to find a name for a really pervasive pattern in pop music I've noticed this decade, and it turns out it's a documented phenomenon: the Millennial Whoop:



Yeah, yeah, the name is more tedious inter-generational warfare — call it something else if you want. But it's such a strange, specific hook, almost like a Tarzan yell — and it's everywhere! I swear to god it's like the teal and orange color correction of contemporary pop music, the successor to autotune and dubstep.

A variation on the Whoop is something I've heard referred to as "Canyon Guy" music, and appears more often in indie rock. Basically, it sounds as if the Whoop is being yelled out anthemically by a guy marching with a bass drum at the bottom of a deep canyon. I can't even name any examples because it's all so generic, but it all kind of sounds like Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and appears in 70% of all commercials on Hulu.

This is probably my favorite song featuring the Whoop, because it's targeted toward my demographic:



Whoop!
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 12-31-2016, 06:08 AM
teg's Avatar
teg teg is offline
HP 50/150 █████▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: the Tim Hortons Capital of Canada
Posts: 9,032
Default

damn millenials and their use of vocals as instrumentation

how dare they
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-31-2016, 06:19 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

That's not the point I'm trying to make, regardless of what the author chose to call it. It's just another interesting, hyper-specific pop music meme/trend, like how disco beats were inescapable in a lot of non-disco music in the late '70s, or how reverbed snare drums were all over the place in the mid- to late '80s.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-31-2016, 06:40 AM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 14,199
Default

Is this really a new thing or something unique to current music? I feel like you could find some examples of people going "woooo" and "whoaaah" in older songs?

I do love that CHVRCHES song though.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-31-2016, 06:46 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by estragon View Post
Is this really a new thing or something unique to current music? I feel like you could find some examples of people going "woooo" and "whoaaah" in older songs?
I'm sure it shows up in older music here and there (I'm particularly thinking of "Tarzan Boy"), but it's particularly pervasive lately. It's not just using vocals as instrumentation — it's a very specific sequence of notes on a major scale, and it suddenly became super-marketable in the 2010s.

EDIT: Probably wasn't worth its own thread, sorry. Just something I found amusing.

Last edited by taosterman; 12-31-2016 at 07:09 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 12-31-2016, 07:33 AM
Dizzy Dizzy is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 27,309
Default

"Good Time" seems like a prime example of this. And I ... like that song ... *hides*

Surprised Fun didn't show up in the video. That's music more millennial than a box full of mimosa emergency vials.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-31-2016, 07:35 AM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 14,199
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by taosterman View Post
EDIT: Probably wasn't worth its own thread, sorry.
On this, you couldn't be more wrong. Please don't apologize. It's interesting to know that people are noticing this as a thing, whether there is precedent or not.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-31-2016, 07:40 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by estragon View Post
On this, you couldn't be more wrong. Please don't apologize. It's interesting to know that people are noticing this as a thing, whether there is precedent or not.
Thanks, I'm just feeling anxious today and was worried I'd started an accidental Damn Millennials!! thread.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-31-2016, 08:09 AM
Excitemike's Avatar
Excitemike Excitemike is online now
Space Prez
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 14,738
Default

Wait, are you telling me they still make music?
Like, new music?
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-31-2016, 09:12 AM
krelbel's Avatar
krelbel krelbel is online now
Good Bee
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 5,103
Default

I watched the video and yeah, put me solidly under the "no possible way this is a modern trend even a little bit at all" column. People have been doing this as long as people have been opening their mouths and letting sound come out.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 12-31-2016, 09:26 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

What are some examples, then? The article lists some antecedents (like Video Killed the Radio Star), but the point isn't that it's a recent invention, but rather that it's currently a pervasive trend within pop songwriting.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 12-31-2016, 09:35 AM
Pajaro Pete's Avatar
Pajaro Pete Pajaro Pete is offline
so exciting!
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 17,889
Default

Some of the examples in that video feel like a bit of a stretch. It does feel like there's a very specific INDIE ROCK one, but some of those are just, like, people going "oh oh oh" and it doesn't really sound that similar.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 12-31-2016, 09:45 AM
Pajaro Pete's Avatar
Pajaro Pete Pajaro Pete is offline
so exciting!
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 17,889
Default



is this a whoop



is the "ooh-ooh" after the "had" a whoop
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 12-31-2016, 09:52 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

I didn't watch the whole video I linked, so it might have cast its arms a little too wide. The Kings of Leon one is a bit of a stretch for sure, and it opens the video. I'm thinking of the identical "whoa-oa-ah-oa" vocal refrain present in California Gurls, Good Time, The Mother We Share and that parody song from Popstar. It's a very specific sequence of notes used in a very specific, percussive way, and I can't think of any hit song from, say, the '90s that does the same thing.

Also yes I'm devoting way too much brainpower to this subject, I'm sick right now.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 12-31-2016, 10:00 AM
Pajaro Pete's Avatar
Pajaro Pete Pajaro Pete is offline
so exciting!
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 17,889
Default



this goes "I-I-I" instead of "Oh-Oh-Oh"
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 12-31-2016, 10:00 AM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 14,199
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by taosterman View Post
Also yes I'm devoting way too much brainpower to this subject
I could not disagree more strongly. This is a good start, but I hope that everyone will devote even more brainpower to this. I am too stupid about music to make any meaningful comments, but I would love to see this turn into a thorough examination of whoops over time.

Please do not stop, people with a strong enough musical ear to analyze whoops.

(I don't know whether or not this sounds like sarcasm, but I am dead serious.)
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 12-31-2016, 10:13 AM
Kirin's Avatar
Kirin Kirin is offline
Not a Beer
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: NC
Posts: 18,780
Default

Yeah, I dunno. They definitely picked out a lot from the last few years, but I still have a little trouble thinking of what's basically just a vocal descending major third as a distinctive enough thing to be a new trend. But maybe. It'd be interesting to see if anyone has really trolled older stuff looking for it.

Actually this would be a really neat trial for a fast audio processing algorithm. Surely the tech that powers Soundhound/Shazam etc could be leveraged to search for this kind of thing. But I dunno if there's any public API that will let you troll a huge music catalog without running into rights issues.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 12-31-2016, 10:34 AM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirin View Post
Yeah, I dunno. They definitely picked out a lot from the last few years, but I still have a little trouble thinking of what's basically just a vocal descending major third as a distinctive enough thing to be a new trend. But maybe. It'd be interesting to see if anyone has really trolled older stuff looking for it.
It's specifically how the major third is employed, as a joyous, wordless, "clap your hands" style refrain. Rock and pop music are so mechanically simple that trends tend to arise more from the production and performance side than any actual innovation in music theory. Like the way power chords are the simplest and stupidest of all guitar chords, but when amplified and distorted they kicked off one of the biggest trends in 20th-century popular music.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 12-31-2016, 11:42 AM
Rivers's Avatar
Rivers Rivers is offline
The Hawley-Smoot Tariff
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Where the Three Rivers Meet
Posts: 4,123
Default

This is a cool topic, but I'm way too musically illiterate to recognize this pattern.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 12-31-2016, 11:56 AM
Sarcasmorator's Avatar
Sarcasmorator Sarcasmorator is offline
Space dad
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 15,386
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivers View Post
This is a cool topic, but I'm way too musically illiterate to recognize this pattern.
I think I'm literate enough, I just don't listen to enough pop to notice it. But now that I have I'm going to hear it *everywhere*.

Last edited by Sarcasmorator; 01-01-2017 at 12:49 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 12-31-2016, 01:09 PM
Büge's Avatar
Büge Büge is offline
Safe Space
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: TO, ON, CA
Posts: 13,806
Default

Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 12-31-2016, 02:11 PM
aturtledoesbite's Avatar
aturtledoesbite aturtledoesbite is online now
hi there
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Lafayette, LA
Posts: 14,478
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Büge View Post
the moment i started reading this thread (but with internet too slow to watch the videos) this is the first thing that came to mind. and now it won't leave.
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 12-31-2016, 02:47 PM
Dizzy Dizzy is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 27,309
Default

Thank you, Buge.
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 12-31-2016, 03:09 PM
four-so's Avatar
four-so four-so is offline
All are Mr. Saturn
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 1,884
Default

I'm in the "Vocalists have been doing this forever but young people think they are the first ones to do/discover something" camp.

And still I'm glad someone pointed it out. I mostly listen to punk and metal, so I wasn't cognizant of this. I'm wondering if some of it has worked its way into the music I listen to.

/goes to listen to Mastodon intently

Really, this reminds me of saxophone in 80s pop music. Everywhere just because. Now that I think about it, I have a Spotify list of 450 80s songs and I bet I could find the millennial whoop in a few of those.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 12-31-2016, 03:38 PM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by four-so View Post
I'm in the "Vocalists have been doing this forever but young people think they are the first ones to do/discover something" camp.
Again, this isn't a question of whether the "whoop" is a musical innovation (it's not) — it's that it's become a very audible trend in '10s rock and pop music, and something producers and songwriters have increasingly relied on, whether consciously or unconsciously.
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 12-31-2016, 04:22 PM
four-so's Avatar
four-so four-so is offline
All are Mr. Saturn
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 1,884
Default

Oh, it's definitely a thing I think modern pop music is tuned in on. Not surprising, though. Music tends to go through trends. I just wonder when the recent trend started.

I also thought this was amusing. There's a few 80s tunes in there with Millennial Whoop in full effect.

Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 01-01-2017, 05:06 AM
teg's Avatar
teg teg is offline
HP 50/150 █████▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒▒
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: the Tim Hortons Capital of Canada
Posts: 9,032
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by taosterman View Post
What are some examples, then? The article lists some antecedents (like Video Killed the Radio Star), but the point isn't that it's a recent invention, but rather that it's currently a pervasive trend within pop songwriting.
Doo-Wop was like, a huge thing through the fifties and early sixties.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 01-01-2017, 07:34 AM
ghosttaster's Avatar
ghosttaster ghosttaster is offline
poisonous thread snake
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 1,679
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by estragon View Post
Is this really a new thing or something unique to current music? I feel like you could find some examples of people going "woooo" and "whoaaah" in older songs?

I do love that CHVRCHES song though.
I think it has more to do with the attack/decay of the "whoa-a-oh-oh" or whatever. That hard 'chop' between syllables.

I also think it's vocalists turning an effect that probably started out of sampling culture into a standard part of their analog singing vocabulary. It makes sense.
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 01-01-2017, 12:42 PM
DemoWeasel's Avatar
DemoWeasel DemoWeasel is offline
23 ski-dook
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Southern California
Posts: 10,276
Default

Even the Ducktales theme isn't safe from incessant hooting!
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 01-01-2017, 12:52 PM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is offline
Gesundheit!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ann ARR-BRR
Posts: 9,444
Default

Ducktales, EY-YO-EY-YO
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:17 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Your posts ©you, 2007