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Scientists claim climate change has already made an impact on music — here’s how

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Climate change is predicted to intrude into almost every area of life — from where we live, to what we eat and whom we war with.

Now music can be added to the list.

That’s the unusual idea put forward by British researchers Tuesday, who say the weather has powerfully but discreetly influenced the soundtrack to our lives.

And tastes in songs are likely to change as the climate shifts.

Fancy listening to the Beatles’ “Here Comes The Sun” when you are grinding out yet another long, sweaty heatwave?

“These assumptions we have about certain weather being good and certain weather being bad, like sun being good — that might change,” researcher Karen Aplin of the University of Oxford told AFP at a European Geosciences Union meeting in Vienna.

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In Europe, “people are like: ‘Oh, yes!’ when it’s summer,” she said.

“But if it’s going to be 40 degrees (Celsius, 104 degrees Fahrenheit) every summer for 10 years… that might change how people feel about the weather and the emotions they link to it.”

Aplin and five other scientists combed through databases of more than 15,000 pop songs, finding statistical backing for the assumption that our moods are strongly swayed by the weather.

These emotions, in turn, are expressed in the music that artists compose and what the public likes to hear.

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The team looked at some of the most popular English-language songs, mainly from the United States and Britain, from the 1950s to today — drawing heavily from an online karaoke website.

They searched song titles, band names and lyrics for references to weather.

“We found about 800,” said Aplin.

Of the 500 greatest songs of all time, as listed by Rolling Stone magazine in 2011, a whole seven percent were weather-related.

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Bob Dylan, John Lennon and Paul McCartney were the most prolific in this category.

The sun was referenced most often, followed closely by rain, although “pretty much all types of weather came up”, said Aplin.

The seasons and wind or breeze were third and fourth most popular, while “frost” and “blizzard” were at the bottom of the list.

Love and relationships were unsurprisingly the biggest single category for weather metaphors — “Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone,” crooned Bill Withers, while Billie Holiday lamented the “Stormy weather” after a breakup.

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“What we found about pop music was that the lyrics can be used very clearly to link the weather to a particular emotion, and usually the sun is positive and rain is negative,” said Aplin.

An exception was some Country and Western songs, which “talked about rain as a positive thing: it brings crops and food,” said the atmospheric physicist who also plays double bass in an orchestra.

– Stormy weather –

The researchers were intrigued to find that in the 1950s, an active decade for hurricanes, more music was written about wind and storms.

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This highlights the potential for a shift in musical themes if climate change brings ever-more frequent extreme weather events, as predicted.

Chirpy songs about sunshine and gentle summer breezes could get elbowed in favour of darker, more dramatic fare.

Based on present carbon emission trends, say climate scientists, worsening droughts, floods and storms as well as rising seas are waiting for us a few decades from now.

“Under climate change, the type of weather people are influenced by to write might change,” said Aplin.

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“You might find more songs about severe weather because that is more part of people’s live, or a backdrop to their lives, than the weather we have now.”

The research paper, which Aplin said had been accepted to appear in the Royal Meteorological Society publication “Weather” in May, will have an online link to the list of songs compiled so far, with an open invitation for people to add to it.

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Councilman ignites chaos at meeting by whining about people being mean to Phoenix cops who threatened to kill black family

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An incident in which Phoenix police threatened to kill a black family over an allegedly stolen doll has sparked outrage in the community.

Protesters have demanded that the officers be fired and that the $721 million budget for police should be held until that happens, the Washington Post reported.

In response, Phoenix councilman Sal DiCiccio chided protestors in a video flagged by News One.

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2020 Election

Michael Moore warns that Trump will be hard to beat: ‘He hasn’t lost one inch of his fired-up insane base’

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Left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore thinks that Democrats had better get ready for a very tough fight in the 2020 presidential election.

Even though polls continue to show that President Donald Trump is historically unpopular, Moore believes that the president's base is fired up to reelect him and will crawl over glass to vote for him again next year.

In particular, Moore was struck by the massive enthusiasm that greeted the president at his big kickoff rally in Orlando, Florida.

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Biden says Trump strategy makes Iran conflict ‘more likely’

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President Donald Trump's strategy on Iran, including abandoning a nuclear pact, is a "self-inflicted disaster" that could push the United States towards war with a major adversary, Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden warned Thursday.

Hours after Iran shot down a US spy drone, sending tensions soaring, the former vice president said Trump was failing to prevent the Islamic republic from obtaining a nuclear weapon and to secure energy supplies through the Strait of Hormuz.

"President Trump's Iran strategy is a self-inflicted disaster," Biden, who leads in polling for his party's 2020 nomination, said in a statement.

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