Arbitrarily Grading The Year That Was: A Look Back At The Major Music Happenings of 2010.
|Not quite an A+. But 2010 was still a pretty good year for music.|
While electro-pop has had some resurrections over the years, it's now a mainstay of popular music. Look no farther than one Lady Gaga for proof: This year, she became the first artist in history to have her first six singles reach the Billboard Top 10. And, on top of Gaga's achievements, the charts this year were either dominated by new electro-pop acts such as Taio Cruz and Ke$ha or by other artists jumping on the bandwagon, such as Usher, Katy Perry, and Chris Brown.
But electro-pop's rise wasn't the only news this year: As Miley Cyrus and company reach adulthood, the industrial machine was in need of a new tween sensation -- and they found one in Justin Bieber. His meteoric rise turned the YouTube star one of the youngest artists to reach No. 1 on the Billboard 100.
Worldwide, the only thing bigger than Justin Bieber in 2010 was the World Cup, where, with the advances of technology, Shakira's "Waka Waka" was heard by billions of people living in all corners of the planet -- to the tune of 267 million views on YouTube, over 500 million views during the opening ceremony on television, and over 700 million views during the World Cup Finals commercials.
But don't let all the mainstream news discourage you. From taking a journey into Kanye West's fantasies to reanalyzing the suburbs with Arcade Fire and learning how to have a chivalrous break up with Cee-Lo Green, the year also had it's fair share of artistic genius.
In other news, bands like the Red Hot Chili Peppers finally came out of hiatus (minus John Frusciante) as bands like Fall Out Boy finally disbanded to the pleasure of ears everywhere. Other musical departures came as Paul Gray of Slipknot, Teddy Pendergrass, El Shaka, and Teena Marie all passed before their time.
Anyway, all this news has us wondering: How would this year be graded? Was is a net plus or loss from previous years? We decided to look into these questions and arbitrarily grade the year's happenings, event by event. See the results after the jump
Jun 10: Bonnaroo 2010 | Conan O'Brien goes from late night to performing at festivals. | +1
Jun 18: Miley Cyrus releases Can't Be Tamed | Parents are furious by her sexualization. | +1
Jul 7: American Idols LIVE! cancels eight of its 38 shows because of falling ratings. | Good run, American Idol. We thank you cultural icons like William Hung and Sanjaya. | +2
Aug 6: Lollapalooza 2010 | Arcade Fire, The Black Keys, Lady GaGa, Erykah Badu, MGMT, and The Strokes all in three days. | +1
Aug 20: Wyclef Jean's bid for president of Haiti is rejected. | It's fair to say that you should be living in the country where you're running for president | +1
Nov 22: Kanye West releases My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy | The highlight of the year. | +4
Dec 26: Teena Marie Dies | Sad news, considering how she helped break the racial barrier in soul music. | -1
2010 Overall: +1
So, there you have it. After starting out terribly with its worst month of the year, January (which scored a -6), the year bounced back, thanks in large part to its strongest, August (which earned a +6 rating). And, all in all, the year actually didn't turn out too bad! Fueled by the fall of Fall Out Boy and Kanye's artistic adventures among other events, we'd say this year has been an overall plus for the progression of music.