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The Influences of Music

By mookunyot Feb 27, 2013 750 Words
According to social statistics (n.d.), 52.17 percent of people listen to music every day and 26.63 percent of people listen to music almost every day. It implies that music plays a vital role in society. Due to human’s creations, such as televisions and radios, which make music be heard more easily. Unsurprisingly, it becomes a huge part of people’s lives. It has a connotation in itself. Therefore, this essay will illustrate that music can influence people in various ways: feelings, thoughts and behaviors.

Feelings can be affected by music. For me, rock songs, such as Know Your Enemy by Green day, makes me feel uncomfortable and upset due to its heavy, loud, and fast beat. Besides, according to North, Tarrant, and Hargreaves(2004), listeners who listen to a nonviolent rock song will have lower levels of opposed feelings than listeners who listen to a rock song with aggressive lyrics. Conversely, when I am upset or angry, a pop music, like Live High by Jason Mraz, can change my mood completely. Its smooth voice and soft tone fit perfectly together. And it has such a huge impact on me; it gives me a chill feeling which can help me feel better and get rid of such things. Furthermore, the lyrics of some song can make me smile unexpectedly, such as Happy by Mocca. The song says “Don't You Give up, Keep Your Chin up, And Be Happy”. It expresses that no matter what happens, just stay strong and be happy. It is such a lovely phrase that can instantly turn my whole world upside down. Music has an impact on thoughts. Muchet (2010) said that a study of 121 Midwestern high school students’ music preference pointed out that 75 percent of girls who like listening to heavy metal music have thought about suicide compared with 35 percent of girls who like listening to other kinds of music. Plus, almost 50 percent of boys who favor heavy metal have considered suicide compared to others who like listening to non-metal music. On the other hands, music can have a positive benefit on thoughts. Some song has meaningful lyrics that can motivate people. For example, the lyrics from Lose Yourself by Eminem: “You better lose yourself in the music, the moment

You own it, you better never let it go
You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime”
It tries to convince people that you had better not let any opportunity slips away by not trying to grab it. This song can truly motivate me and change my thought. I used to think that there are abundant opportunities out there, and I can catch it whenever I want. Then, this song totally changed my thought. Music influences behavior. According to Palmer(2003), researchers from Iowa State University and the Texas Department of Human Services found that aggressive behavior is perpetuated from offensive music lyrics and have long-term effects. Sallinger(2005) stated that  Richard Paul White,  Colorado's serial killer, said his action was inspired by the song Ride the lightning by Metallica. In the following lyrics: Guilty as charged

But damn it, it ain't right
There is someone else controlling me
Death in the air
Strapped in the electric chair
This can't be happening to me
Who made you God to say
"I'll take your life from you!"
This phrase influenced him to commit the crime. Beside, in case of drug addiction, Not an addict by K’s Choice is a good example due to its lyrical content. It says “It's not a habit, it's cool, I feel alive. If you don't have it, you're on the other side. I'm not an addict (maybe that's a lie)”. It indicates that using drug is cool and you might be sort of weird if you do not use it. In fact, using drug does not even come close to the word “cool”. Therefore, it  this lyrics might affect people in a poor way that they have to behave like this in order to be  cool. To conclude, music has a massive effect on people’s lives. People listen to it almost every day and that gives music a power to be able to influence our lives. People’s moods, thoughts, and behaviors can be affected by the lyrical and tonal content of the song they listen to. It has both advantage and disadvantage, so it depends on which side they choose to perceive.  

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