Lady Gaga photoshoot for her "Just Dance" single and the slang term Recession Pop Music overlaid on the image.

Recession Pop Music

Updated Jul 10, 2024 at 03:59PM EDT by Zach.

Added Jul 10, 2024 at 01:38PM EDT by Mateus.

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Recession Pop Music is a slang term widely used to describe pop music from the early 2010s with narratives about clubbing and feeling positive during hard times. The phrase became a viral topic in 2024 as netizens started to consider the subgenre a response to the 2007-2008 financial crisis or 2012 phenomenon, leading to memes, essay videos and comedic skits about the resurgence of recession pop relating to the success of Chappell Roan and Charli XCX's Brat album as indicators.


The earliest mention of the term "recession pop" was posted in an article by the Irish Independent[1] website on March 5th, 2009. The article features an interview with Lady Gaga in which she commented about the "recession in Ireland as well as the U.S., which is almost in a full depression now," and how this inspired her to create music for people that were "hungry for rejoicing and escaping."

The term was later popularized in the 2020s, being featured in many articles on the internet,[2][3] including an essay video posted by YouTuber[4] @naomi.cannibal in which she explains the origin of "recession pop" in the music industry (seen below). The video amassed over 68,000 views and 4,100 likes in seven months.


In June 2024, TikTokers started to use the "recession pop music" term to reference the quality of music being released being similar to the early 2010s. For example, on June 18th, 2024, TikTok[5] user @goosefraud posted a video using Charli XCX's "Club Classics" song paired with the text, "You can tell we're spiraling towards another recession vc of how good pop music is getting again." The post (seen below, left) amassed more than 401,000 plays and 119,000 likes in a month.

On July 7th, 2024, TikTok[6] user @bonksbrain uploaded a video doing Kesha's "JOYRIDE" dance trend, captioning it, "oh recession pop is back." The video (seen below, right) amassed over 782,000 plays and 155,000 likes in three days.

@goosefraud i’m no economist but it sounds like recession pop out here #brat #bratsummer #charlixcx ♬ Club classics – Charli xcx

@bonksbrain dc @Rawlins this dance eats #kesha ♬ JOYRIDE – Kesha

Various Examples

@jadah8severyone #fy #inflation ♬ Time of Our Lives – Pitbull & Ne-Yo

@lois.airbuds Recession core is coming in clutchhhhh #airbuds #ayeshaerotika #jvb #music #pop ♬ THE BADDEST REMIX with Ayesha Erotica – Joey Valence & Brae

Search Interest

External References

[1] Irish Independent – Recession pop

[2] Hot Knife – Towards a Theory of Recession Pop

[3] Mesmerized – Revisiting Recession Pop

[4] YouTube – The Roots of 'Recession Pop'

[5] TikTok – goosefraud

[6] TikTok – bonksbrain

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