AJC  Vol.10 No.2 , June 2022
Musical and Extra-Musical Factors Contribute to the Meaning of Popular Music: A Critical Analysis of “Zombie” by the Cranberries
Abstract: From the perspective of communication, this paper puts the study of popular music in the field of media, communication, and culture, discusses the interaction between popular music, culture and society. It is worth mentioning that when people become the audience of a musical work, they not only pay attention to its musicality, but also discuss social issues, publicity, and even extra-musical information related to the performers of the song. Such extra-musical information sometimes goes beyond the musicality of the work and affects the public’s judgment on the meaning of the musical work. As a part of the cultural industry, popular music is worth studying. This study focuses on a specific song, “Zombie”, and analyzes the impact of musical and extra-musical factors on its meaning construction. It attempts to provide a broader perspective on the interpretation of the music market and tries to bring enlightenment to the promotion of the cultural industry.
Cite this paper: Song, J. (2022) Musical and Extra-Musical Factors Contribute to the Meaning of Popular Music: A Critical Analysis of “Zombie” by the Cranberries. Advances in Journalism and Communication, 10, 199-208. doi: 10.4236/ajc.2022.102013.

[1]   Baumann, S. (2001). Intellectualization and Art World Development: Film in the United States. American Sociological Review, 66, 404-426.

[2]   Brackett, D. (1995). The Electro-Acoustic Mirror: Voices in American Pop. Critical Quarterly, 37, 11-27.

[3]   Buckley, P. (2003). The Rough Guide to Rock: The Definitive Guide to More than 1200 Artists and Bands. Rough Guides.

[4]   Christgau, R. (1981). Christgau’s Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields.

[5]   Christine, A. (2004). The Facts on File Dictionary of Music (4th ed.). Infobase.

[6]   Classic Rock (2017). The Year Rock Struck back.

[7]   de Demelza, B., & Edel, H. (2018, January 15). Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and the Cranberries Pay Tribute to the Late Dolores O’Riordan. Irish Mirror.

[8]   Emma, J. (2017). The Story behind the Song: The Cranberries-Zombie.

[9]   Fairclough, K. (2017). Soundtrack Self: FKA twigs, Music Video, and Celebrity Feminism. In G. Arnold, D. Cookney, K. Fairclough, & M. Goddard (Eds.), Music/Video: Histories, Aesthetics, Media. Bloomsbury Academic

[10]   Frederick, S. (1983). Red and Hot: The Fate of Jazz in the Soviet Union. Oxford University Press.

[11]   Hesmondhalgh, D. (2013). Why Music Matters. Wiley-Blackwell.

[12]   Jill, M. (1997). A Guide to Color Symbolism.

[13]   Keightley, K. (2001). Reconsidering Rock. In S. Frith, W. Straw, & J. Street (Eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Pop and Rock (pp. 109-142). Cambridge University Press.

[14]   Klein, B. (2009). Taming Rebellion: Advertising’s Control over Meaning. In As Heard on TV: Popular Music in Advertising. Routledge.

[15]   Langer, S. K. (1953). Feeling and Form: A Theory of Art, Developed From: Philosophy in a New Key. Scribners.

[16]   Meier, L. M. (2017). Brands: the New Gatekeepers. In Popular Music as Promotion: Music and Branding in the Digital Age. Polity.

[17]   Palczewski, C., Ice, R., & Fritch, J. (2012). Rhetoric in Civic Life. Strata Publishing.

[18]   Paul, M. L. (2003). Visual Communication: Images with Messages (3rd ed.). Wadsworth Press.

[19]   Ron, E., & Andrew, J. (1998). Music and Social Movements: Mobilizing Traditions in the Twentieth Century. Cambridge University Press.

[20]   Ronan, M. (2018). Dolores O’Riordan, Cranberries Lead Singer, Dies at Age of 46. Irish Times.

[21]   Savage, M. (2018). The Tragedy That Inspired Zombie—The Cranberries’ Biggest Hit. BBC News.

[22]   Smith, N. S., Whitfield, T. W. A., & Wiltshire, T. J. (1990). The Accuracy of the NCS, DIN, and OSA-UCS Colour Atlases. Color Research & Application, 15, 111-116.

[23]   Street, J. (2013). Music and Politics. Polity.

[24]   The Cranberries TV (2009, June 17). Video: The Cranberries-Zombie (Official Music Video).

[25]   Timothy, W. (2003). Pop Music: Technology and Creativity: Trevor Horn and the Digital Revolution. Routledge.

[26]   Weinstein, D. (2009). Heavy Metal: The Music and Its Subculture. Da Capo Pres.

[27]   Wikipedia (2019a). Color Symbolism.

[28]   Wikipedia (2019b). Zombie (Song).