Next Article in Journal
Population Genetic Baseline of the First Plataspid Stink Bug Symbiosis (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Plataspidae) Reported in North America
Next Article in Special Issue
Popularity of Different Lampyrid Species in Japanese Culture as Measured by Google Search Volume
Previous Article in Journal
Effects of Consumption of Bt-maize (MON 810) on the Collembolan Folsomia candida, Over Multiple Generations: A Laboratory Study
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Insects 2011, 2(2), 253-263;

Noninsect Arthropods in Popular Music

Biology Program, Quincy University, 1800 College Ave., Quincy, IL 62301, USA
Received: 6 April 2011 / Revised: 28 April 2011 / Accepted: 23 May 2011 / Published: 26 May 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insects in Pop Culture, Art, and Music)
Full-Text   |   PDF [243 KB, uploaded 11 July 2011]


The occurrence of noninsect arthropods in popular music was examined in order to explore human attitudes toward these species, especially as compared to insects. Crustaceans were the most commonly referenced taxonomic group in artist names, album titles and cover art, followed by spiders and scorpions. The surprising prevalence of crustaceans may be related to the palatability of many of the species. Spiders and scorpions were primarily used for shock value, as well as totemic qualities of strength and ferocity. Spiders were the most abundant group among song titles, perhaps because of their familiarity to the general public. Three noninsect arthropod album titles were found from the early 1970s, then none appear until 1990. Older albums are difficult to find unless they are quite popular, and the resurgence of albums coincides with the rise of the internet. After 1990, issuance of such albums increased approximately linearly. Giant and chimeric album covers were the most common of themes, indicating the use of these animals to inspire fear and surprise. The lyrics of select songs are presented to illustrate the diversity of sentiments present, from camp spookiness to edibility. View Full-Text
Keywords: arthropod; crustacean; crab; shrimp; lobster; spider; scorpion; music; cover art arthropod; crustacean; crab; shrimp; lobster; spider; scorpion; music; cover art
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Coelho, J.R. Noninsect Arthropods in Popular Music. Insects 2011, 2, 253-263.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Insects EISSN 2075-4450 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top