If you’ve got a pop song hook stuck in your head and you’re looking for someone to blame, you’ve come to the right place. And it’s not who you think it is. Although the singer of a pop song is often referred to as an artist, those who actually created the songs often toil in obscurity (and a pile of cash and Cristal champagne corks that is roughly waist high). Forget the days of the singer-songwriter and the gritty session musicians and say hello to automated music, synthetic sounds, and the bald Norwegians and other unknowns who actually create the songs that top the charts. As The Atlantic’s Nathaniel Rich explains, “Almost no pop celebrities write their own hits. Too much is on the line for that, and being a global celebrity is a full-time job. It would be like Will Smith writing the next Independence Day.”

+ Even before Apple Music launched, streaming music had already surpassed physical sales. And downloads will the be the next victim.