“Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent” -Victor Hugo
Said one of the greatest known French writers whose book – “Les Miserables”, was made into one of the most successful musical drama movie adaptations. It is very evident that music is something that stirs up the even deepest of emotions and explores the fathomless space of a person’s heart. Music has always a haven, a warm refuge, a beautiful companion for the depressed. The curative power of music has been proven beyond doubt. So what can be the influence of this magic called ‘music’ on one’s personality?
Professor Adrian North of Herriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, UK, conducted one of the largest study on group of more than 36000 people from over 60 countries to understand this very fact. He is an expert in the field of how music affects psychology.
“I am interested in the social and applied psychology of music. My research concerns music and well-being in specific population (e.g., suicidality among rock fans) and the general population (e.g., use of digital music in everyday life to improve mood); the impact of music on consumer behavior (e.g., purchasing, advertising etc.); and theories of musical preference and taste”
“People do actually define themselves through music and relate to other people through it, but we haven’t known in detail how music is connected to identity,” he said.
“We have always suspected a link between music taste and personality. This is the first time that we’ve been able to look at it in real detail. No one has ever done this on this scale before.”
Were his very own words on undertaking this research. So could the songs prowling under your playlist be an exhibitor of your personality. Seems it could..
- Blues fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle and at ease
- Jazz fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing and at ease
- Classical music fans have high self-esteem, are creative, introvert and at ease
- Rap fans have high self-esteem and are outgoing
- Opera fans have high self-esteem, are creative and gentle
- Country and western fans are hardworking and outgoing
- Reggae fans have high self-esteem, are creative, not hardworking, outgoing, gentle and at ease
- Dance fans are creative and outgoing but not gentle
- Indie fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard-working, and not gentle
- Bollywood fans are creative and outgoing
- Rock/heavy metal fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard-working, not outgoing, gentle, and at ease
- Chart pop fans have high self-esteem, are hardworking, outgoing and gentle, but are not creative and not at ease
- Soul fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle, and at ease
“The general public has held a stereotype of heavy metal fans being suicidally depressed and being a danger to themselves and society in general,” he said, “but they are quite delicate things. Aside from their age, they’re basically the same kind of person [as a classical music fan]. Lots of heavy metal fans will tell you that they also like Wagner, because it’s big, loud and brash. There’s also a sense of theater in both heavy rock and classical music, and I suspect that this is what they’re really trying to get at when they listen.”
The very question “What kind of music do you listen to?” itself, seems to be a very personal question sometime. That’s because deep down everyone knows that it is not just a contemplation of our musical preference, but a deep vision into the very aspect of what we actually are.