'Musical Midlife Crisis' Comes at Age 42

Plus: parents aren't hip, and our musical taste 'matures' when we're 35
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 25, 2015 6:57 AM CDT
'Musical Midlife Crisis' Comes at Age 42
Spotify founder and CEO Daniel Ek is seen in Stockholm, Sweden.   (AP Photo/TT/Janerik Henriksson)

Don't be surprised if, at age 42, you find yourself turning to Top 40 once again. A taste expert at Spotify, Ajay Kalia, turned to data from the service to determine that we're most into chart-toppers in our teenage years, the Guardian reports. But "around age 42," Eliot Van Buskirk writes in a Spotify blog post, "music taste briefly curves back to the popular charts—a musical midlife crisis and attempt to harken back to our youth, perhaps?" That's just one of the findings from the study, which also seems to justify kids' certainty that their parents aren't hip: It seems having children drags down our "music relevancy" as much as aging four years does.

How, you ask, did Kalia know which listeners were parents? Based on their new interest in listening to kids' music, he writes at Skynet & Ebert. The study also finds that after our teenage years, our tastes move away from the mainstream until we're about 30. Kalia explains this as a result of two factors: first, we're finding new, less radio-friendly material to listen to, and second, we're going back to the hits of our teenage years—which aren't so big anymore. One other intriguing finding: men's taste moves away from the mainstream more than women's. When we're around 35, our musical tastes "mature," though, of course, we still have the midlife crisis to look forward to. (While Spotify offers these revelations, Jay Z's music service, Tidal, appears to be struggling.)

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