Americans' preferences for music are surveyed by the NEA in the Survey of Public Participation in the Arts. Here are the 1997 results (sample size: 4452 people, all over the age of 18, in households that had a telephone).

In order, including percentage of respondents who "like" the music, followed by the percentage of all respondents who said it was their favorite:

  1. Mood or easy listening 67%, 5.9%
  2. Country-Western 65%, 20.7%
  3. Blues or R&B 63%, 4.8%
  4. Rock 60%, 18.2%
  5. Hymns or Gospel 58%, 13.8%
  6. Jazz 48%, 4.9%
  7. Classical or Chamber Music 47.5%, 6.7%
  8. Big Band 45%, 2.8%
  9. Operettas or Show Tunes 44%, 1.8%
  10. Bluegrass 42%, 0.7%
  11. Soul 40%, 1.4%
  12. Contemporary Folk 38%, 1.1%
  13. Reggae 32%, 0.8%
  14. Parade or Marching Band 32%, 0.2%
  15. New Age 31%, 1.5%
  16. Ethnic/national tradition 31%, 0.8%
  17. Latin, Spanish, or salsa 29%, 3.9%
  18. Choral or Glee Club 26%, 0.1%
  19. Barbershop 22%, 0.1%
  20. Opera 19%, 0.6%
  21. Rap 17%, 1.9%

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