Crossover Music Genres

Image credits: Amanda Edwards / Getty Images

When two genres of music collide into a single song or album, they create a crossover. Crossover genres present melodies that fit in between two or more different categories of music, also known as “alternative” sounds. 

Artist Lil Nas X mixes country-sounding guitar melodies and harmonies with newer-age trap drums on his hit song “Old Town Road.” This is the main reason why he blew up so quickly. According to Forbes, this song was streamed over 2.5 billion times in 2019 alone, just 5 months after the release of the hit. Bringing different styles together is not only beneficial to the artist and listeners, but it is also a revolutionary act in the music world.

Another artist who is at the forefront of modern crossover music is Lil Peep. Peep was a member of the rap group GothBoiClique (GBC) and was one of the first artists to mix rap with heavy rock. When he first started, not even Peep knew what music genre he was making, which he mentioned in his Netflix movie  Everybody’s Everything. His audience and fans would then call it “emo rap” or even “alternative rock.” Although his music dealt with challenging themes, it gave strength to many people who were going through rough times.

Why Crossover Genres Benefit the Music Industry

Official movie of “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus

New types of music are beneficial in two ways. Firstly, new genres expand the artists’ ways of communicating not only with their fans but also with themselves. Secondly, new sub-genres of music influence other artists who have not experimented with crossover genres or didn’t yet step outside of their comfort zone. Music is a tremendously powerful form of art, and those who come across and develop new genres have more power and influence to their name.

Inventing a new music genre today creates diversity. As new sounds arise, new artists and fans do so as well, ultimately evolving the music game. 

The Next  Evolution of Music?

Official trailer of Lil Peep’s documentary Everybody’s Everything (2019)

From rock to rap, pop to funk, older artists just have a different style as opposed to nowadays’ artists. In an exclusive interview on his GNN channel with 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg said: “Everybody nowadays is just trying to rap the same. I don’t know who invented it, if it was Future or the Migos but all of them sound the same.” Here, Snoop was referring to certain trap artists, so-called “mumble rappers” because often the listener cannot figure out what the artist is saying, so it sounds like they’re mumbling.

As new artists surge every year, new genres and categories are added to the charts. This creates room for improvement and evolution. Ten years ago, old-school hip hop drums used to dominate the scene, while today trap drums, synths, and auto-tune seem to be omnipresent in most songs. And surely, in another ten years, there will be more significant changes. That being said, crossover genres are a revolutionary type of music that will greatly influence future artists and their careers.

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