Eric Wood wrote:
I think it's a dominant trend of popular music. Pop music is, by definition, music which is supported by a broad base of paying customers. Therefore, by definition, pop music doesn't even exist without a middle class to pay for it. And therefore, it doesn't make sense to study pop music history from a stylistic or social viewpoint but not from an economic viewpoint.
I was not arguing for ignoring an economic viewpoint. As far as your definition of pop-music that definition sounds a bit dubious to me. What makes you think a middle class must exist to support pop music?
There are different possible definitions for "pop music". Eric's version would be a short term for "popular music", so all music that is popular with a broad mainstream audience. You could also define "pop music" as encompassing all music that evolved from pop cultural influences (as opposed to high cultural ones), which then would include music that is not actually all that popular, and even exclude music that may be very popular. By this second definition it definitely makes sense to study pop music from a stylistic or social viewpoint without looking at economic factors.
First of all "middle class" was too specific.
How can you define pop music as music coming from pop culture influences? Isn't that just circular logic? Where did the pop culture come from?