Nearly 60% of popular songs mention toxic substances – with Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift among the worst offenders, a study reveals.
The researchers analyzed graph hits from 2014 to 2020 to determine how much alcohol, drugs, or tobacco featured in their lyrics or videos.
Canadian rapper Drake has the most videos of smoking, drinking or drugs, with 23 total, followed by American band Maroon 5, which has 10.
Nearly 60% of popular songs mention harmful substances – with Ed Sheeran (above in 2017) and Taylor Swift among the worst offenders, a study reveals
Taylor Swift is seen on stage in Los Angeles in 2019. Lead researcher Stephanie Albert, assistant professor of population health at New York University School of Medicine, told The Mail on Sunday: ‘People famous know that young people expect and imitate them’
Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and rapper Nicki Minaj came in at third place with seven videos all showing toxic substances.
Study leader Stephanie Albert, assistant professor of population health at New York University School of Medicine, told The Mail on Sunday: ‘Celebrities know that young people expect and imitate them. .
‘We want to see these substances less often described in song lyrics and music videos. There are no health benefits for young people using them, but there are certainly many risks and negative consequences. ‘
Her research concludes: ‘The depiction of alcohol, tobacco, hookah (shisha) and marijuana in the lyrics and music videos of popular songs is a public health concern.’
Canadian rapper Drake (above in 2021) has the most videos showing smoking, drinking or drugs, with 23 total, followed by American band Maroon 5, which has 10.
It said the introduction of drugs, smoking and alcohol in music ‘could be indicative of the consumption of such products and signaling that smoking is a social norm’.
Drake’s videos show five toxic substances (alcohol, marijuana, tobacco, e-cigarettes, and shisha), while Swift and Sheeran’s songs feature drinking and smoking scenes. Justin Bieber, Beyonce, Calvin Harris, One Direction and Ariana Grande were also included in the study.
Professor Albert said: ‘Celebrities hold a very powerful position in society and have a unique opportunity to impact lives in positive ways by not promoting or flaunting their alcohol use. , tobacco and drugs.’
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