The Love of Music
Why is music so damn awesome? We’ll tell you why.
We’ve all heard of the people who claim that they listen to everything, yet their iTunes has only Brittney Spears and Katy Perry in it. Or you have the people who only love one genre but just won’t open their minds up anything new. Every one is different, however you never hear “I hate music, all of it.” We’re going to explain to you why that is.
Everyone loves their own kind of music, so in that term “pop” music, is not pop the genre but what you think is popular to you. Pop music is nothing more than auditory cocaine (for those of you who don’t know cocaine is addictive.) Scientists are actually beginning to develop algorithms to predict whether or not a song will become a best seller by hooking peoples brains up to MRI scanners and playing unheard songs, then studying the results. An extremely catchy song, or something a person may like can release small doses of dopamine in your head.
Dopamine= a simple organic chemical in the catecholamine family, is a monoamine neurotransmitter. (Basically it means it makes you happy and makes you want to do it more.)
Extended listening sessions of music can continuously release dopamine giving you a very small but significant “high”. Ever hear a song you hate on the radio? You immediately want to beat up the nearest person, that’s because no dopamine is being released and you experiencing withdrawal like symptoms., whereas if a song comes on the radio that you love, you may dance and hug the person nearest to you.
There are reports in the journal Nature Neuroscience that feeling pleasure in response to music is not only physiologically happening through the feeling of chills but also biochemically causing the release of dopamine, similar to reactions caused by food, drugs and sexual arousal. So a really good song is like really good sex. (Careful combining the two.)
The key to addiction is dopamine, this chemical releases in your brain and it can make you feel happy and enjoying life, it also gives you the need to repeat your actions, hence the addiction. Have you ever noticed that you can’t seem to do anything without listening to music? Sometimes people will turn on music and leave it on just because of that feeling of comfort, that’s an addiction, but if you ask us, it’s healthy. (Maybe we’re still in denial.)
Studies also show that their can be an addiction to loud music, most commonly found in rock musicians. This can actually intensify the dopamine release levels, but be careful, if you think you can get a real “high” off of this you would need to play music almost twice as loud as possible and blow your ear drums. Although this explains why their is a mass amount of rock bands and not as many pop artists. Also, the reason these bands are formed is because you can actually develop a slightly larger dose of dopamine when you are performing and enjoying your own music that you have created. It’s kind of like growing your own secret stash…of music.
So music may seem like a creative expression, it is also scientific and can effect people in ways you may not have known. There is some information on the internet on how to overcome your music addiction, but personally we think that is for quitters, so we’re not going to write about it.
Now that you understand how your addiction works, you can sleep easier at night knowing you’re not the only one. Don’t worry, everyone gets awkwardly excited when their favorite song comes on too.