Data from Spotify appear to confirm why your parents are so out of it: As people get older, they listen to less hot music of the moment, and instead just queue up the oldies.
This statistical crunch comes via Ajay Kalia, who calculated a popularity score for all songs that we streamed in 2014, and then examined who listened to them, and how old they were. The results, as he reports them:
What I found was that, on average …
… while teens' music taste is dominated by incredibly popular music, this proportion drops steadily through peoples' 20s, before their tastes "mature" in their early 30s.
… men and women listen similarly in their their teens, but after that, men's mainstream music listening decreases much faster than it does for women.
… at any age, people with children (inferred from listening habits) listen to a smaller amounts of currently-popular music than the average listener of that age.
Personified, "music was better in my day" is a battle being fought between 35-year old fathers and teen girls — with single men and moms in their 20s being pulled in both directions.
One that that really seems to kill one's desire to listen to zeitgeisty tunes? Having kids. Kalia also examined the listening habits of parents — by identifying accounts that streamed a lot of kids' music. As he found:
Even when we account for potential account sharing, users at every age with kids listen to smaller amounts of popular music than the average listener. Put another way, becoming a parent has an equivalent impact on your "music relevancy" as aging about 4 years.