The greatest songs of all time were inspired by the weather

750 popular songs referring to weather, songwriters are frequently being inspired by sun, rain and blizzards


Ians July 07, 2015
750 popular songs referring to weather, songwriters are frequently being inspired by sun, rain and blizzards. PHOTO: MEDICALDAILY

You must have heard The Beatles' Here Comes The Sun, Bob Dylan's Blowin' In The Wind and The Hollies' Bus Stop where a couple falls in love under an umbrella. Did you know that these masterpieces were inspired by actual weather events, a new study says.

According to a new scientific study that analysed 750 popular songs referring to weather, songwriters are frequently being inspired by sun, rain and blizzards.

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Over 900 songwriters or singers have written or sung about weather, the most common being Dylan, followed by John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

"We were surprised how often weather is communicated in popular music, whether as a simple analogy or a major theme of a song," said lead study author Sally Brown from the University of Southampton in Britain.

Brown, along with researchers from universities of Oxford, Manchester, Newcastle, and the University of Reading analysed the weather through lyrics, musical genre, keys and links to specific weather events.

Frequently, songs mentioned more than one weather type, indicating a range of emotions within a song.

Some songs mentioned up to six weather types such as Stormy by Cobb and Buie.

In 1969, George Harrison wrote Here Comes The Sun after being inspired by one of the first sunny days of spring after a "long cold lonely winter".

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"Our study also found that references to bad weather in pop songs were statistically more significant in the US during the more stormy 1950s and 1960s than the quieter periods of 1970s and 1980s," Brown said.

The researchers looked at 30 weather-related artists, bands and lyricists, including Wet Wet Wet, The Weather Girls and KC and the Sunshine Band.

Weather-related songs are very popular, with seven percent of them appearing in Rolling Stone's (2011) top 500 list of the "Greatest Songs Of All Time".

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