The Billboard Top 40 chart is depressingly male-dominated right now. Women may make up 50% of society, but 72.5% of songs in this week's Top 40 were performed by male singers. This week is worse, percentage-wise, than the entire first half of the year—which is pretty incredible, since that number was already high. We broke down the Billboard Top 40 songs in America right now; here's what it looks like:
The Top 40 looks drastically different now than it did he last time we scraped the charts for data, in July. For the last few months, we've been seeing the same songs—a cocktail of Taylor Swift, Uptown Funk, and Paul Walker—stay up high on the charts. But as we head into the fall, it seems there's room for some new voices.
Since July, 42.5% of the songs in the Top 40 are new. Some tracks on the Top 40 are not new releases, just new to the chart. But there are some new songs: Five Seconds of Summer released a new single. So did One Direction, Demi Lovato, Selena Gomez, and Charlie Puth.
For the third quarter of 2015, it seems, we're in store for a massive tidal wave of new music. But for now, the new songs in the Top 40 are overwhelmingly by men. Here's what the gender break-down of new songs looks like:
So where are the ladies? Getting ready. Carly Rae Jepsen will release an album this month. So will Lana Del Rey, so will CHVRCHES, and Aleissa Cara. Next month, Selena Gomez will put out an album. There's even a small possibility that Rihanna might grace us with her eighth studio album.
Hopefully 2015 will recover from this moment of male domination. Maybe Beyoncé will just drop another surprise album and fix it for us?
Theme-wise, summer gave us songs about butts and Paul Walker, but as we head into fall, we're getting songs about love. This analysis is subjective, since many songs, as works of art, try to tell us something about the world and are about more than one topic. But on the surface level, here’s what the Top 40 songs right now are about:
Love completely dominates the charts with 53%—a statistic that has remained pretty stable since we first analyzed the charts in May. There are, however, fewer songs about butts now that we're headed into fall. Goodbye, butts.
25% Butts, 1% misandry, 1% Paul Walker: A look at the top songs in America right now
Why are there so few women on the Top 40 chart?
Kelsey McKinney is a culture staff writer for Fusion.