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15 Least Popular Pop Music Artists According to Baby Boomers: Ranked

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“Baby Boomers” is the term used to categorize the generation born between 1946 and 1954. Often referred to as “Boomers,” these individuals were born between the mid-1960s and the end of World War II. Before millennials surpassed them, they were the largest generation born in the United States. This generation makes up a huge part of the world’s population and has a significant impact on the economy.

After WWII, birth rates around the world skyrocketed, perhaps in response to the fact that so many were lost during the war, and so many put off having families during the Great Depression. Many saw a successful, happier future after a time of depression and poverty, and wanted to pass that on to children. During this time, the United States alone produced more than 73 million babies. 

Why We’re Covering This

Baby Boomers | An older couple cooking a healthy vegan meal with vegetables together
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Baby Boomers hold a lot of economic and political power in the world today.

Baby Boomers are one of the most influential generations, both politically and economically. Many are reaching retirement age, and over 50% of them held household wealth at the beginning of 2024. This is perhaps due to the G.I. Bill, which allowed many to buy homes at a prime time, and to start using credit for purchases. The fact that they hold so much power in today’s world shows that their opinions are important and should be considered in almost every decision an enterprise makes. Companies who understand “Boomers” are likely to gear advertising and products to their liking, although Gen Z is quickly gaining power and popularity among large corporations.

For pop music purposes, 24/7 Wall Street used the information gathered by YouGov the 15 least popular pop music artists ranked by Baby Boomers. We chose from a list where at least 2/3 of Boomers knew who the artist was, and have ranked them here from most popular to least popular.

15. Selena Gomez and the Scene

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79% of Boomers surveyed knew who the band was, but it was ranked as the 15th least popular.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 31%

Headed by popular but current solo artist Selena Gomez, the band popped up on the scene in 2008. Their debut album “Kiss & Tell” was followed by “A Year Without Rain” and “When the Sun Goes Down.” The band is known for hits like “Love You Like a Love Song” and “Who Says” and won the Choice Music: Group Award at the Kids Choice Awards three years in a row before going on hiatus in 2012 and then permanently splitting up.

14. Nick Jonas

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Nick Jonas has a successful acting career on top of his success as a solo artist and with his band the Jonas Brothers.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 31%

Part of the sibling trio that made up the Jonas Brothers, Nick Jonas made his debut on the Disney channel in the movie “Camp Rock” before releasing several popular albums with his brothers. In 2013, it was confirmed that the band split and Nick was out on his own. He released several studio albums during this time and also became a judge on the popular series The Voice. Some of his most popular solo songs include “Remember I Told You” and “Jealous.”

13. Sugar Ray

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Mark McGrath sings lead vocals on most Sugar Ray songs.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 30%

Sugar Ray is headed by Mark McGrath and known most for their song “Fly” which was released in 1997. They began with a funk metal sound but moved more mainstream with this single, and found a more radio-friendly style. The band took a ten-year break but in 2019 released their latest album “Little Yachty” with a single the same month.

12. One Direction

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One Direction caught the eye of the public by participating in The X Factor.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 28%

One of the century’s most popular boy bands, One Direction consisted of British/Irish members Zayn Malik, Louis Tomlinson,  Harry Styles, Liam Payne and Niall Horan. Popular songs include “Best Song Ever,” “Story of My Life,” and “Steal My Girl.” Before going on hiatus in 2016, they were one of the most successful boy groups of all time. Several members are now out on their own with successful albums and tours.

11. Demi Lovato

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Demi Lovato is a successful actor, singer and songwriter, but only favored by 28% of Boomers.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 28%

Another Disney star who became a famous pop singer, Demi Lovato started their career acting on shows “Sonny With a Chance” and “Camp Rock.” Lovato has worked on The X Factor and acted on Glee. They also sang the national anthem at Super Bowl LIV and performed at the Grammy Awards in 2020. Lovato is known for hits like “Cool for the Summer,” “Heart Attack” and “Sorry Not Sorry.’

10. Justin Bieber

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Justin Bieber was discovered by Scooter Braun and Usher when he was only 14.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 25%

Discovered by SCooter Braun in 2008, Justin Bieber started his career young. Raised in Canada, he plays the trumpet, guitar, piano and drums. His first major hit was “Baby,” released in 2010. The music video for the song became the first on YouTube to reach 500 million views. As Bieber ages, his public persona has at times overshadowed his music, and only 25% of Boomers had a favorable opinion of him.

9.  Jessica Simpson

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Jessica Simpson was a talented singer long before she became a successful entrepreneur.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 24%

A singer, actress and fashion icon, Jessica Simpson rocketed to stardom in 1999 after opening for the boy band 98 Degrees. A former gospel singer who grew up with a Baptist youth minister father, she is known for hits like “I Wanna Love You Forever.” She had a popular reality show with her then-husband Nick Lachey, and is now a Youth Ambassador for Operation Smile.

8. Smash Mouth

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Smash Mouth’s lead singer Steve Harwell died from liver failure in 2023.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 24%

Formed in 1994 with band members from San Jose, California, Smash Mouth is best known for their hits “Walkin’ on the Sun,” “All Star” and “Then the Morning Comes.” They released a greatest hits album in 2005 and released a video created by artificial intelligence in August 2023. This may contribute to their less than favorable rating among Boomers, with only 24% of those surveyed having a favorable opinion.

7. The Pussycat Dolls

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Once The Pussycat Dolls split up, every member went on to create solo projects.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 24%

Founded as a dance ensemble and American girl group, The Pussycat Dolls released their first single in 2004. They then went on to achieve success with songs like “Buttons” and “Don’t Cha.” They then diversified into product endorsements, reality TV, merchandise and a Las Vegas act. They reunited in 2017 and then split again in January 2022 after canceling a tour due to complications caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

6. Joe Jonas

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Joe Jonas was the lead singer for the Jonas Brothers for years before stepping out on his own.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 23%

The second of the Jonas Brothers to make the list, Joe Jonas was the band’s frontman and main singer while they were winning records and being nominated for Grammy awards. He’s also an actor and branched out into the fashion world. Only 23% of Baby Boomers gave him a favorable rating, even while 71% said they knew who he was.

5. Lizzo

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Lizzo has been a polarizing figure in music as she works to spread a positive message about body confidence.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 21%

It’s not well known that along with being a Grammy-winning singer and rapper, Lizzo is also a classically trained flutist. She’s known for sprinkling themes of body confidence, sexuality and race through her music. She’s known for her hits “About Damn Time” and “Truth Hurts,” but most recently was in the news when three dancers accused her of creating a hostile work environment.

4. Victoria Beckham

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Victoria Beckham was an original member of the Spice Girls and is married to soccer star David Beckham.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 20%

One of the original members of the Spice Girls, Victoria Beckham has gone on to make a name for herself in fashion and design. Known as “Posh Spice” she sold more than 20 million copies of the band’s debut album. She released her first solo album in 2001 along with an autobiography that became a bestseller in Britain.

3. Ashlee Simpson

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Ashlee Simpson got her start as a backup dancer for her sister and is now married to Pete Wentz.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 17%

Sister of Jessica Simpson (also on this list), Ashlee Simpson started her career as one of her sister’s backup dancers. She then had her own reality show before debuting her first studio album “Autobiography.” She’s known for singles like “Pieces of Me” and “Autobiography.” Only 17% of Baby Boomers surveyed had a favorable rating of Simpson, while 70% had heard of her.

2. Chris Brown

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In his early days, Chris Brown was compared to Michael Jackson because of his dancing and singing abilities.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 16%

While 69% of Boomers surveyed know the name Chris Brown, only 16% have a favorable opinion. This is likely due to the fact that video showed him abusing his then-girlfriend, singer Rihanna. Brown was discovered while he was only 13, and signed to Jive Records in 2004. His self-titled debut studio album came out in February 2005, and Brown co-wrote most of the songs, including the first single “Run It!” 

1. R. Kelly

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Former R&B singer R. Kelly is now serving time for performing and filming sexual acts with a minor.

Percentage of Baby Boomers with a favorable opinion: 12%

As one of the best-selling R&B artists of the 1990s and 21st century, Kelly’s fall from grace came in 2022 when he was sentenced to 30 years in prison for filming sexual acts with minors. He was acquitted on charges of obstruction of justice, but convicted for enticement of a minor and child pornography. His music is extremely controversial but was originally popular when it was released in the early 90s. Songs like “Bump n’ Grind” and “I’m Your Angel” had him at the top of his game until 2002 when he was first charged with having sex with an underage girl. Since then, his life is a series of highs and lows culminating in a long prison sentence. This may be the reason that only 12% of Boomers had a favorable view of him while 77% surveyed knew who he was.

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