Alternative music reached mainstream

Alternative Metal During the early 1990s a new style of alternative music emerged, which combined elements of alternative rock with heavy metal. This new genre is considered a precursor to the nu metal movement of the late 1990s. This style was typified by bands such as and Jane’s Addiction, Faith No More, Helmet, Living Colour, Marilyn Manson, Metallica, Nine Inch Nails, Primus, Rage Against the Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers (were able to achieve mainstream success), The Smashing Pumpkins and Tool. The style also blended funk and hip hop elements, creating subgenres of this style such as funk metal and rap metal.

Alternative Rock entered the musical mainstream and many bands became commercially successful during the 1990s. The music of this decade had more melodic and meaningful lyrics. Some popular bands included; The Breeders, Cake, Cranberries, Creed, Foo Fighters, Garbage, Gin Blossoms, Green Day, Hole, Massive Attack, Mazzy Star, No Doubt, The Offspring, Radiohead, R.E.M., Sinéad O’Connor (late 1980s into early decade), Stone Temple Pilots and Sublime.

Grunge (referred to as the Seattle sound) is an alternative rock genre/subculture that emerged during the mid-1980s in the American Pacific Northwest state of Washington, particularly in the Seattle area. Grunge fuses elements of punk rock and heavy metal. Lyrics were typically angst-filled with themes such as social alienation, self-doubt, abuse, neglect, betrayal, social and emotional isolation, addiction, psychological trauma and a desire for freedom. Nirvanna was at the forefront with Kurt Cobain, who infamosely died from drug overdosed. Some other popular bands associated with the genre, were Alice in Chains, Soundgarden and Pearl Jam.

Hip Hop and Rap hit the billboard charts in a huge way with mega-selling albums. Distinct regional differences also developed outside the hip hop/rap strongholds of the 1990s, New York City and Los Angeles. A few headliners of this decade were Cypress Hill, De La Soul, Fugees, LL Cool J (late 1980’s-1990’s), N.W.A, Outkas and Wu-Tang Clann. Two key artists were both murdered – Tupac Shakur and the Notorious B.I.G.

Pop rock and singer-songwriter In the 1990s, there was a revival of the singer-songwriter movement of the 1970s. This movement lasted up to about 2004 with artists like Norah Jones, Dido and Sarah McLachlan. Important artists of this movement include Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Alanis Morissette, Tori Amos, Fiona Apple, Liz Phair, Juliana Hatfield, Edwin McCain, Duncan Sheik, Jewel, Natalie Merchant, Sheryl Crow and Whitney Houston. Again establishd artists like Madonna, Michael Jackson and Prince kept going, having more top hits kepping there legacy strong.

Teen Pop music carried positions in the top charts most of the decade. The big commercial acts included Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, and Christina Aguilera dominating the charts in the earlier years of the decade.

“Just because you are a character doesn’t mean that you have character.”

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