Defining the American Popular Song

American Popular Song is Irving Berlin, Carole King, and The Lion King.

It is not rock, but thousands of rock songs are popular song. It is not country, but the biggest country hits usually become popular song.

These are the standards, the songs you know, the songs you’ve forgotten but remember immediately when you hear the chorus.

Virtually anything written by Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, or Richard Rodgers…and many songs written by Neil Diamond, Brian Wilson or Carole King.

It’s the songs sung by Perry Como, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, The Carpenters, Dinah Shore, Barbra Streisand.

It’s a lot of the Beatles music, and most of Dolly Parton’s catalog.

From Patti Page to Billy Joel, popular song is that which is hummed and enjoyed by kids in kindergarten as well as their grandparents.

It’s the Great American Songbook, where (almost) Anything Goes!