Late s hard rock had been established as one of rock genres . From the end of the s, hard rock and soft rock became popular in rock scene  , with both emerging as major radio formats in the USA. The Hot and Easy Listening charts became more similar again toward the end of the s and into the early and mids, when the texture of much of the music played on Top 40 radio once more began to soften. The adult contemporary format began evolving into the sound that later defined it, with rock-oriented acts as Chicago , the Eagles , and Elton John becoming associated with the format.
Radio stations played Top 40 hits regardless of genre; although, most were in the same genre until the mids when different forms of popular music started to target different demographic groups, such as disco vs. This evolved into specialized radio stations that played specific genres of music, and generally followed the evolution of artists in those genres. By the early s, softer songs by The Carpenters , Anne Murray , John Denver , Barry Manilow , and even Streisand, began to be played more often on "Top 40" radio and others were added to the mix on many AC stations.
In addition, several early disco songs, did well on the Adult Contemporary format. On April 7, , the Easy Listening chart officially became known as Adult Contemporary,  and those two words have remained consistent in the name of the chart ever since. Adult contemporary music became one of the most popular radio formats of the s.
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Collins has been described by AllMusic as "one of the most successful pop and adult contemporary singers of the '80s and beyond". The amount of crossover between the AC chart and the Hot has varied based on how much the passing pop music trends of the times appealed to adult listeners. Not many disco or new wave songs were particularly successful on the AC chart during the late s and early s, and much of the hip-hop and harder rock music featured on CHR formats later in the decade would have been unacceptable on AC radio.
The album was certified Triple Platinum in the United States alone and became a major success throughout the globe. Several additional singles from the disc made the AC Top 10 as well. The album won over many critics in the need to define AC, and appeared to change the tolerance and acceptance of AC music into mainstream day to day radio play. This in part led to a widening of the market, not only allowing to cater to more niche markets, but it also became customary for artists to make AC-friendly singles.
At the same time, the genre began adopting elements from hard rock as tastes were shifting towards louder music, while AC stations in general began playing more rock acts. In , Billboard created a new chart called Adult Top 40 , which reflects programming on radio stations that exists somewhere between "adult contemporary" music and "pop" music. Although they are sometimes mistaken for each other, the Adult Contemporary chart and the Adult Top 40 chart are separate charts, and songs reaching one chart might not reach the other.
In addition, hot AC is another subgenre of radio programming that is distinct from the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart as it exists today, despite the apparent similarity in name. In its early years of existence, the smooth jazz format was considered to be a form of AC, although it was mainly instrumental, and related a stronger resemblance to the soft AC-styled music.
This led to the presence of numerous genres on the AC charts, often crossing to the "pop" charts, winning over many critics in the need to define AC, and increased the tolerance and acceptance of AC music into mainstream day-to-day radio play. Key to the success of AC in the s was the demographic which had outgrown the pop music offerings of the time, most new rock became too alternative and harsh for AC radio and most new pop was now influenced heavily by dance-pop , hip-hop and electronic dance music. At the same time, the music industry also began to focus on older audiences and markets generally considered "niche".
During the late s, certain pop songs began entering the AC charts instead, generally after the songs had fallen off the Hot Rather than emphasizing older songs, adult contemporary now began playing many of the same songs as top 40 and adult top 40 , but only after the hits had become established. Or, to optimists, to get a second life.
AC radio's shift into more mainstream pop was a result of the changes on the broadcasting landscape following the economic downturn and eventual recession , as advertisers preferred more profitable chart-based formats, which meant the demise of many AC-based formulas, primarily those aimed at older audiences, with tastes changing towards more modern music among all age groups. Diminishing physical record sales throughout the s also proved a major blow to the AC genre, and there are concerns that the portable people meter , a device being used to determine radio listenership, may be incompatible with AC songs and may not accurately pick up that a person is listening to an AC station because of the pitches and frequencies used in the style.
Key AC artists of the s include Bruno Mars , Adele and Ed Sheeran , featuring a mostly pop-influenced sound, faster-paced and more energetic than the typical AC fare of previous years. In radio broadcasting, adult contemporary is divided into several sub-formats, each with their own musical direction and demographic targeting. A station formatted as adult contemporary with no qualifier, also referred to as "mainstream" adult contemporary, generally has a similar playlist to hot AC stations, but are broader in their playlists—especially in their inclusion of classic hits from past decades.
Hot adult contemporary radio stations play a wide range of popular music that appeals towards the age group,  cherry-picking uptempo songs from pop , pop rock , alternative , and indie rock genres, while excluding more youth-oriented music such as hip-hop. It serves as a middle ground between the youth-oriented contemporary hit radio and harder modern rock formats, and adult contemporary formats such as "mainstream" and "soft" AC that are typically targeted towards a more mature demographic. The "hot AC" designation began to appear in the s, to describe adult contemporary stations with a more energetic presentation and uptempo sound than their softer counterparts.
Seeking to fill a void in the market as determined by focus groups , the station focused on pop-rock music targeting young adult women, as well as emphasizing community involvement. In the six months after its launch, KHMX slowly climbed from 14th place in the market to 3rd, and its format and branding was widely replicated by other stations. The hot AC format leans towards current music, with recurrents usually reflecting familiar and youthful music that adults had grown up with. Initially focused more on pop rock, the format has evolved to reflect changes in the composition of this audience; by the mids, the format had evolved to include more uptempo pop music with wide appeal.
Hot AC stations typically keep a larger body of recent hits in rotation than those with rigid, chart-driven formats like contemporary hit radio CHR or urban contemporary. As these stations' playlists have become concentrated towards airing only the current hits at a given time, hot AC stations can help build and sustain the popularity and familiarity of a particular song over a long-term period.
This effect has been credited in helping build an audience for early singles from new acts such as Adele , James Arthur , Rachel Platten " Fight Song ", which achieved mainstream popularity after its use during Hillary Clinton 's presidential election campaign , and Max Schneider whose single " Lights Down Low ", over a year after its original release, became a notable sleeper hit on the Billboard Mainstream Top 40 and Hot due in part to strong hot AC promotion and airplay.
The Man , and Twenty One Pilots. Modern adult contemporary refers to AC formats with a modern rock -based presentation. In the 's and early 's, this format was typically oriented towards pop rock , and often targeted women. The Soft adult contemporary format typically targets women and at-work listening.
Soft AC playlists are generally conservative in comparison to hot AC, focusing on pop ballads , soft rock , and other familiar, light hits. Easy listening stations had begun shifting to the format out of concern that their existing programming would not appeal to the current generation of listeners. In a article, James Warren of the Chicago Tribune characterized soft AC stations as being "as middle-of-the-road and unthreatening as modern media get", with personalities that were encouraged to be as inoffensive and "low-profile" as possible, and a more conservative music library than hot AC-leaning stations.
The director of a soft AC station in Connecticut, WEZN-FM , told Warren that he had banned their personalities from reading top-of-hour news headlines, so that listeners wouldn't be tempted to tune to an all-news competitor. Soft AC stations tend to be more selective in their music libraries than other adult contemporary stations, preferring proven songs over current hits. By the s, to improve their appeal among changing demographics, some soft AC stations began to widen their playlist to include selections from contemporary acts such as Bon Jovi , Mariah Carey , Eric Clapton , Phil Collins , Elton John , and Whitney Houston.
On the other hand, by , New York's WLTW had begun to phase out its softer music in favor of a more uptempo direction. Consultant Gary Berkowitz argued that the soft AC format had become increasingly irrelevant in comparison to mainstream and hot AC, due to PPM markets preferring uptempo music.
At the same time, however, soft AC began to experience a resurgence. The trend continued into and , with iHeartMedia extending its Breeze brand to other soft AC flips, and the brand among others being adopted by competitors such as Entercom. The format typically targets African-American adults: July numbers from Nielsen Audio recorded it as the top format among African-Americans and The format typically excludes youthful rhythmic music, such as hip-hop and rap , that are usually associated with the rhythmic contemporary format.
Smooth Adult Contemporary was evolved from smooth jazz stations, in order to attract more younger listeners particularly in the important age demographic without completely alienating jazz fans. Blige and limiting instrumentals to two or three cuts an hour and usually restricting airplay of instrumentals to artists such as Kenny G and Chuck Mangione who had crossover pop success.
In markets where they existed, Smooth AC stations were meant to fill a void for soft music created by the mainstream Adult Contemporary format's overall move toward more uptempo adult Top musical fare. KTWV's transition was successful in improving the station's ratings. The Smooth AC format is now virtually extinct on commercial radio, with one exception being KJZY in the Santa Rosa, California market, which continues as a hybrid of smooth jazz and adult standards.
Since the s it has become common for many AC stations, particularly soft AC stations, to play primarily or exclusively Christmas music during the Christmas season in November and December. While these tend mostly to be contemporary seasonal recordings by the same few artists featured under the normal format, most stations will also air some vintage holiday tunes from older pop, MOR , and adult standards artists — such as Nat King Cole , Bing Crosby , Dean Martin , the Carpenters , Percy Faith , Johnny Mathis and Andy Williams — many of whom would never be played on these stations during the rest of the year.
These Christmas music marathons typically start during the week before Thanksgiving Day and end after Christmas Day , or sometimes extending to New Year's Day. Afterwards, the stations usually resume their normal music fare. Several stations begin the holiday format much earlier, at the beginning of November. The roots of this tradition can be traced back to the beautiful music and easy listening stations of the s and s. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Radio format and music genre. For other uses, see Adult contemporary disambiguation. See also: Soft rock and List of soft rock artists and songs. See also: Adult Top 40 and Adult album alternative. See also: Smooth jazz radio.
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Retrieved November 26, Retrieved October 3, Archived from the original on February 2, Retrieved August 4, September 6, American Popular Music. Line graphs represent effects of Music MT vs. Non-music NM intervention at baseline and post-intervention timepoints for primary top panel and secondary bottom panel behavioural outcomes. MT is shown in red and NM in blue; darker shades represent observed values and lighter shades represent predicted values. Errors bars represent standard error SE. MT is shown in red and NM in blue. All brain images are presented in radiological convention and coordinates are in MNI space.
Individuals with ASD have a unique profile of strengths amid limitations, which can be harnessed to design treatment paradigms that improve functional outcomes Given their universal appeal, intrinsic reward value and ability to modify brain and behaviour, musical activities have been proposed as a potential strength-based rehabilitation tool for ASD 22 , 36 , In the current trial, we demonstrate that 8—12 weeks of music intervention can indeed alter intrinsic brain connectivity and improve parent-reported outcomes in social communication and FQoL in school-age children with ASD.
Improvements in social communication were found on the CCC-2 from baseline to post-intervention in MT vs. Improvements were specific to pragmatics, reduction of inappropriate initiations and better social relations and interests. These findings are consistent with the idea that music employs a structured approach to social communication, which may otherwise be hindered by sensory and social difficulties 12 , Despite being modestly sized, these effects are highly specific to MT given the comparable structure of the control intervention and may have promising clinical and policy implications The family is the primary support system for individuals with ASD throughout their lifespan.
However, parents of children with ASD experience high levels of stress that can negatively impact well-being 97 , making FQoL a critical component in evaluating treatment outcomes. Although both groups received a form of interventional support, only parents of children in MT reported increases in FQoL, particularly on items on family interaction, cohesion and coping and benefits of disability-related supports. Recently, Bieleninik and colleagues 98 published a multicentre trial of improvisational music therapy for children aged 4—7 years and found no reductions in ASD symptoms on the ADOS Social Affect domain after 5 months of therapy, compared to standard care.
The authors suggest that this could be due to variability across therapists, clinical assessors 99 and the choice of ADOS as outcome measure, particularly because no previous well-controlled and blinded intervention studies 3 have found treatment effects on the ADOS. While this trial demonstrates the global feasibility of implementing music therapy in large-scale international settings, it also indicates the importance of choosing appropriate outcome measures for psychosocial interventions in heterogeneous neurodevelopmental populations.
The focus should not only be on symptom reduction but also on overall quality of life and functional improvements. In turn, outcomes that are malleable through intervention can inform future targets of research. To complement behavioural improvements, we present the first evidence that music intervention alters functional brain activity in ASD leading to functional communication gains. Specifically, MT, relative to NM, increased functional connectivity between bilateral primary auditory cortex and subcortical and motor regions often reduced in ASD and reduced over-connectivity between auditory and visual-association areas Brain connectivity in ASD has often been conceptualized as a trade-off between bottom—up and top—down processing.
However, it is still not clear whether an increased reliance on bottom—up sensory processing and hence, sensory over-connectivity, is a cause or consequence of atypical top—down cortical modulation 41 , In line with this idea, we find that engaging in musical activities can directly influence auditory—motor connections in the brains of children with ASD similar to effects of musical training in neurotypical populations 27 , 30 , Previous studies have reported that early motor difficulties are often predictive of later social communication impairments in ASD Thus interventions targeting motor skills may impact later social outcomes.
It is important to note that our participants did not exhibit significant motor deficits and that the two intervention groups did not differ in their range of motor skills Table 1. Thus any gains observed in auditory—motor connectivity in the MT group are not driven by group differences in motor skills and are specific to the music intervention.
Furthermore, our findings show that music might play a modulating role in reducing the over-connectivity between sensory cortices, subsequently improving communication processes , In light of mechanisms of music-induced neuroplasticity introduced earlier, our findings support bottom—up integration of sensorimotor brain networks leading to improved social functioning rather than top—down music-based reward Music interventions may thus have a positive influence on social functioning, possibly though modulation of domain-general sensory and cognitive processes, which are often atypical ASD 41 , Future research should focus on better understanding the neural mechanisms underlying music-related changes in brain connectivity and its impact on social behaviour.
Evidence-based behavioural and psychosocial interventions for school-age children have received limited attention 3. Neuroscience-informed support for such interventions offers the opportunity to integrate brain development with behavioural approaches, allowing development of individualized treatment paradigms A strength of the current study is the use of neuroimaging to support improvements in behavioural outcomes resulting from MT. Future work should focus on identifying individuals whose profiles may benefit most from music and integrate neuroimaging in multisite trials of such interventions.
Inclusion of more direct observation-based outcomes and the role of mediators and moderators e. In conclusion, the present study demonstrates that 8—12 weeks of music intervention relative to non-music behavioural intervention can improve parent-reported social communication, FQoL and intrinsic brain connectivity in school-age children, thus supporting the use of music as a therapeutic tool for individuals with ASD.
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