Composer Rankings: Two Lists

Following are two ranked lists of the composers treated at this site. The first presents the five hundred that scored the highest on the variables-integration effort. The second consists of my subjective ranking of the top 222 of these 500, taking into account some intangibles. Each individual list is explained further below.

The 500 Composers, ranked by raw score.

As already described, the composers were ranked by integrating their scores on a series of variables. Below, under "new", the latest-version ranks are shown, followed by the ranks obtained in the earlier analysis I did for the original opening of the site ("old"). Under the latter column only the ranks for the then-top-222 are given. The raw scores for the latest version are shown on the right.

It was my objective in both analyses to attempt to produce statistically-derived rankings, and while I believe the results in both cases are reasonably representative, it is still true that what comes out depends on the initial choice of variables, and their balance. Thus, a few anomalies still appear to stand out. For example, the statistics say that the new version ranking for Arrigo Boito should be 133, but I can hardly feel this to be reasonable. Similarly, Paul Dukas now is placed at number 197, which seems much too low.

Nevertheless, overall the system seems to do a reasonably good job. For an "adjusted version" of these findings, see:

The top 222 composers: a subjective re-arrangement.

I investigated a good many kinds of materials to come up with the system presented above, and in addition have spent a lot of time over the years listening to this kind of music on the radio, and through other sources. Given both the results of the system presented above and this additional experience, I have created a subjective ranking of the top 222 names, given below. These are not "personal favorites", you understand, just my best personal attempt to rank what seem to be the currently "most relevant" names in order.

Under "my" below are given the new ranks; next to them are the ranks associated with the statistically-derived "top 500" list. Again, the raw scores for the latter are given on the right. For those who are statistically-inclined, or perceive marketing applications, I suggest you consider the sometimes-large differences between the "my" and "new" rankings, as this might identify new variables that could be used to improve the "new" rankings.

Once again it is reminded that this and all the other lists here are derived from an American listening perspective; no one effort of this kind can take into account the listenerships of all countries and cultures at once.

retrieve PDF file here

Return to Main Stats Menu
Return to Main