Difference Between Rock and Pop

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    rock-band Rock vs Pop

    Pop music is a genre of music that is often regarded as the softer alternative to rock. It constitutes the type of songs that are relatively short and aimed at commercial recording. The main audience for pop music is the youth market although it usually cuts across age sometimes, given that this type of music constitutes relatively short love songs with a straight message that identifies with the ups and downs common in relationships of all type. Whereas rock music has got a lot of sub genres, pop music’s basic elements have fairly remained unchanged for some time now although it has on a small scale been influenced by other popular music genres.

    Whereas pop music will reach out to the general audience, rock music mainly identifies with a particular subculture, having evolved from western and country music to rock and roll and then to mainstream rock. The typical sound of rock music often has three chords formed by a rhythm section of bass guitars, which are the strong, the insistent back beat and a catchy melody. Rock is often performed by a group of members known as a rock band or rock group. Each band member will usually be skilled in playing a particular instrument so it is common to find a bass guitarist, electric guitarist, a drummer and a lead singer making up a rock band. For pop artists they will usually come as solo artists or if in a group they will all be singers without anyone taking up a particular instrument. Notable pop groups include N-Sync and popular pop solo singers include Britney Spears.

    Pop music gives its listeners a notably different sound from rock. Pop involves more singing and vocal expression, with a danceable beat to it and it comes as no surprise that pop songs are one of the best songs to learn dancing with. Rock on the other hand is an expression of emotions through instruments so vocals matter less. But that may be another reason rock has got many sub genres because there’s a variety of ways to express emotions through instruments. Sub genres of rock like classic rock, hard, alternative, indie and soft rock are all ways of expression of emotions using metals.


    1. Pop music focuses on vocals and beat while rock focuses mainly on instruments like bass and guitar.
    2. Pop music’s basic elements have not evolved much like rock which has evolved into sub genres.
    3. Rock identifies with a particular subculture while pop tends to cut across audiences.
    4. Rock music is made often by a group each playing a particular instrument whereas pop can be by a single artist or a group of singers.

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