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You Won't Listen to New Music After You Turn 33, According to Study

By Ryan Book, The Music Times | May 01, 2015 10:00 AM EDT

This obviously doesn't apply to Music Times readers, but a new study has estimated that the average music listener stops seeking out new music past the age of 33. Ajay Kalia, representing the website Skynet & Ebert, tapped into the data available via Spotify and its Echo Nest analytics branch to check out what listeners of various ages were streaming...and it seems like people in their late-30s and beyond weren't exactly tuning into Rae Sremmurd.

"While teens' music taste is dominated by incredibly popular music, this proportion drops steadily through peoples' 20s, before their tastes 'mature' in their early 30s," Kalia wrote. "Until their early 30s, mainstream music represents a smaller and smaller proportion of their streaming. And for the average listener, by their mid-30s, their tastes have matured, and they are who they're going to be."

Ultimately, the researcher came to two factors that lead listeners of that age range to keep away from current Top 40 hits: One, you're more likely to discover the genre you love for the rest of your life during your 20s. Just like your first girlfriend, you may have loved nu metal during high school but you're more likely to find your true love during college (in both music and life). Secondly, even if you do end up listening to Top 40 fare, odds are you'll return to the popular songs of your coming-of-age...versus what's hot right now. That, we suppose, is why we keep listening to Will Smith's "Getting Jiggy Wit It" despite knowing better.

Things could be even worse than Kalia thinks however. After all, this study relied exclusively on Spotify listening activity. If someone goes out of their way to get a Spotify account, free or otherwise, they're more likely to be actively interested in music than a commute-radio listener. It's possible 33 year-olds in that demographic are even more close-minded than 33 year-old Spotify users.

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