Washington, Oct 1: It seems that alcohol is marketed to children and teens via the music they love, as a new study has found that as many as one in five songs in the UK top ten today include references to alcohol-a figure rising partly due to US-imported songs.
What impact is this having on the youth of today? Experts warn that fresh evidence demonstrates that public health messages on alcohol may no longer be audible over the louder message from some sections of the music industry.
Older children and teens listen to over two hours of music every day. Researchers in the United States have documented a rise in alcohol references, including mention of specific brands, in popular music. But until now, little data was available on comparable UK trends.
Researchers from Liverpool John Moores University, UK led by Katherine Hardcastle selected four focal years for analysis, comparing music charts across four decades.
They found a significant jump in the number of times alcohol was mentioned.
Songs charting in 1981 contained relatively few references to alcohol, with the number declining further in 1991.
Rave culture was popular in this period; a music scene linked more to Ecstasy than alcohol.
But the alcohol was back in music by 2001, featuring in eight percent of popular hits.
This figure continues to climb, more than doubling by 2011, with almost one in five (18.5 percent) top 10 songs featuring alcohol-related lyrics.
This pattern is consistent with US trends, although UK charts still have fewer alcohol mentions than their US counterparts.
The findings are published in the journal Psychology of Music, published by SAGE. (ANI)