Date of Award

Spring 4-28-2017

Document Type


Primary Advisor

Dr. Paul Harlan


This thesis attempts to identify and distinguish musical genre through harmonic analysis. The genres of Rock, R&B/Hip-Hop, and Christian have been selected for this study. The top ten songs from each genre (as listed by Billboard’s Year End Charts) are analyzed and contrasted with those of other genres in an attempt to prove that harmonic analysis alone is sufficient to identify the genre of an unknown song. Heavy in analysis, this thesis will find structure in music and use that structure to more deeply appreciate not only the study of genre, but of music itself.