Have you watched a video edit of your favorite celebrity, television show, or movie on social media and wondered what the name of the song that had a slow tempo beat used in the background was? That is what you call a slowed and reverb song.
The slowed and reverb effect is used by slowing down the song of your choice and adding the reverb effect, which lowers the pitch of the singer. Mostly listened to by Gen-Zers, like myself, slowed and reverb songs make you feel some sort of calmness that also has a nostalgic feel. These slowed-down songs fall into lo-fi, but not entirely, just the aesthetic part.
Gen-Zers have popularized this genre that has made slowed and reverb videos get more views than an artist’s original song. The slowed and reverb version of R&B singer Kali Uchis’s “Dead to Me” has 46 million views on YouTube and has been used repeatedly on Tiktok. The original version of the song has 20 million views on her YouTube account. The slowed and reverb version of French DJ Petit Biscuit’s song “Sunset Lover” has 43 million views on YouTube when the original one only has 12 million views on his account.
Since 2020, slowed and reverb songs have been more common on social media apps like Tiktok and Instagram and get then published on YouTube. Some may assume that the effects started to get popular during this time, but it actually originated in Houston from the late DJ Screw in the 1980s and is called chopped and screwed. The chopped and screwed effect is used by slowing down a rap song mix in beat switch-ups, similar to slowed and reverb effects.
By knowing the history of the chopped and screwed effect, it allows us to give proper recognition to its creator, DJ Screw, and to acknowledge where the slowed and reverb sound came from. His chopped and screwed songs can be found on YouTube, made from people who can be found from 10 years ago.
Although slowed and reverb songs do catch the attention of many Gen-Zers, it does make them rediscover amazing songs with this effect that makes them appealing and worth listening to.