Hit ParadeSlate

The Bridge: Feels So Good

Blogger and pop historian Tom Nawrocki says instrumentals were the ultimate novelty hits.

[This edition of my Hit Parade—“The Bridge” bonus series is available to Slate Plus subscribers only. A link to the episode show page is below. To sign up for Plus—and tell Slate that Hit Parade sent you!—visit slate.com/hitparadeplus.]

In this mini-episode of Hit Parade, host Chris Molanphy is joined by Tom Nawrocki, a music writer for Medium.com and the author of “Rewind The Biggest Instrumental Hits of the Past 50 Years.” He says the history of wordless hits tends to be filled with novelties and one-offs, but instrumentalists who deliver pop hooks and personality on their instrument can brand themselves and come back to the charts.

Next, Chris quizzes a Slate Plus listener with some music trivia, gives him a chance to turn the tables with a question of his own, and previews next month’s full-length episode. Slate Plus members can sign up for a chance to be our trivia contestant on a future episode here.

Podcast production by Benjamin Frisch.

Content retrieved from: https://slate.com/podcasts/hit-parade/2023/09/how-songs-without-lyrics-become-hits.