Forget ‘live’ election result coverage – here’s slicing-dicing data of an electorate of one

I wasn’t a punter, candidate, campaign manager, studio pundit, voter, online or TV bucket-filler, advertiser, or holiday destroyer last Sunday. So, I spent pretty much the whole day doing a Sunday – bingeing on Spanish psycho-thrillers, getting walked by my dog, sandblasting the walls with music, and plying myself with mead, not necessarily in that order.

Any information, granular or chunky, on the election results in the three states that go under the sobriquet ‘Hindi heartland’ (minus the left ventricle of UP) and in that other one, worth ruminating – the name of the process of chewing cud, where cattle swallow food fast and store it in their stomach, to bring this food back later to their mouth and chew on it again – I gathered all that in the evening when the results became actually clear, and the next morning, when the newspapers laid things out in a more digestible form than the non-stop pea soup projectile vomit on TV inspired by The Exorcist the earlier day.

Following election results, like watching the hour hand move, is just not my thing. (I’ve peeked during satsangs.) But I do understand the allure of psephological psychodependancy. So, I figured, let me use the same principle of data-dicing, hyper-analysing to a game I do have my skin in: me.

Wall-to-wall poll results coverage has political research organisations like C-Voter, Today’s Chanakya, Jan Ki Baat and Matrize to frack all kinds of numbers pertaining to voting patterns, geographic tracking, demographic dynamiting and all that. To understand the mood of me, an electorate of one, I turned to Spotify, the audio streaming app where I do much, but not all, of my music listening. (Most of my music I play on YouTube on my phone that I then cast on our big TV and boAt Aavante Bar speaker. But about this discrepancy, later.) And for my psonic-psephological purpose, there was ‘Spotify Wrapped 2023’, which threw up trends and figures of my listening patterns of the last 11 months.

Now, if music maketh a man, the kind of music one listens to over time is a ‘voting pattern’ that is a fair reflection of the consumer/voter one is. Which, in turn, provides clues to product producers/political parties about my psycho profile, including support-oppose dynamics.

So, putting on my best I’m-not-bored-but-I’ll-come-across-as-bored Prannoy Roy voice, here goes a breakdown of how Indrajit Hazra – referring to oneself in the third person is totally rizz these days – voted musically for the 2023 Spotify assembly:

  • I listened to 10 genres with rock and alternative rock coming up on top.

  • Burlington in Vermont in the US (I had to look up where it is) ‘listened just like you: people there are far more likely to be fans of Wilco, Beck and Misfits’. I’m now curious whether faraway Vermonters are ideologically closer to me than most of my family who don’t share my taste in music.

  • I played 374 songs this year.

  • Top song listened to was Hybrid Moments, the 1978 version recorded in New York’s C.I. Studios, by the punk rock band, Misfits.

  • Top 4 other songs listened:

Where Eagles Dare Misfits, 1979

Girlfriend in a Coma The Smiths, 1987

Bad Mouth Fugazi, 1989

Lump The Presidents of the United States of America, 1995

These results, Rajdeep, barring ‘Hybrid Moments’ at the top, are very surprising. Not only because no song of my favourite bands – Nirvana, The Rolling Stones, Sex Pistols, etc – feature in this Top 5, but also because No. #5 ‘Lump’ must have been a song I played on a loop one particular day when I needed that guitar hook mixed with uplifting frivolity.

  • I listened to 191 artists this year.

  • I listened for 1,952 minutes this year, listening time peaking on June 29 (a Thursday!) at 180 minutes.

  • September was my peak listening month.

Like assembly elections don’t have a strong correlation with parliamentary elections, my Spotify data is only one data set to my complete listening ideology. Misfits may have won this round. But in the YouTube election, I suspect, the results will be considerably different.

I hope this poll breakdown and analysis has been as useful to you as the latest state poll results coverage has been to me. Good day and good luck.


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