Study: When Things Look Dark, Country Music Gets Sunnier

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

New research finds socioeconomic conditions impact the type of songs that become hits, but in opposite ways for pop and country music.

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

I love this study - the data is compelling although I’m not 100% sure about the reasons posited by the researchers as to why.  In essence - pop music is happy when the nation is up and doing well and sad when the nation is doing poorly.  Country music however is the opposite with upbeat lyrics and major chords more prevalent during times of depression.  Which regardless of why - is just fascinating and if I’d known this when I was a working songwriter on a country gig - maybe we’d have been more successful! ;-p


See on psmag.com

I Listened To Music Designed For Focus By Scientists - And My Productivity Shot Up

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

Taming a wandering brain on demand isn’t easy, especially when you need to be able to focus, understand what you’re working on and meet a deadline.

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

I like the focus@will team - we pretty much believe the same things and it’s great to read write ups like this from people who have been skeptical about the idea of music to work to.   


See on businessinsider.com.au

There’s a reason why great music can give you a ‘skin orgasm’ — chills down your spine

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

When was the last time that music moved you, not just emotionally, but physically? Researcher Psyche Loui says music can give you a “skin orgasm.” And there may be an evolutionary reason why we get that chill down our spine.

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

Researcher Psyche Loui fromWeslyanUniversitytalks about the whole “Why Music” discussion.  Using the recent insights into chills and anhedonia as a starting point, Psyche places emphasis on the strong neural connection between the processing of sound and emotions.  She proposes that music could have evolved as a form of emotional communication.  Sure makes sense to me. 


See on pri.org

Brands can engage multiple generations with pop music | Analysis | Marketing Week

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

Those aged 20 to 60 are listening to the same music so brands that use it can engage with multiple generations, finds exclusive research.

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

Rather long piece that covers a number of different aspects but the big takeaway is the inexorable move by businesses to harness music to sell their products.  What they are doing is looking to establish relationships through music between you and their brands - although I’m not sure I want a musical birthday card sent to me from a bank!

One interesting aspect is the power of rock and pop music has meant that for the first time you can use the same music to appeal to people in their 20’s and their 60’s - that’s a multi generation span that wasn’t available to brands a few decades ago.  Interesting read.


See on marketingweek.co.uk

Study examines link between recalling alcohol brands in popular music and binge drinking in teens

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

Binge drinking by teenagers and young adults is strongly associated with liking, owning, and correctly identifying music that references alcohol by brand name according to a study by the University of Pittsburgh and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center.

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

File this under “Duh!” Good size study though - 2500 people between the ages of 15 and 23. In essence - if you can remember the names of alcohol brands in popular songs you’re twice as likely to have had a drink and more likely to binge. Which of course does open a whole chicken and egg thing - is it the booze first that makes you identify with it in the music - or is it the music first that gets you to drink.

What i liked about this was that the researchers stayed away from that but what they did propose was better education in media literacy so that kids are aware of how brands can be driving their behavior. I kinda dig that!

Image Credit: Harpenden NCH - Coffee Bar by Philip Howard
https://www.flickr.com/photos/22326055@N06/5914408265


See on news-medical.net

Music multitasking: How ‘background’ listening enhances life - CNET

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

One of the prevailing trends in audiophile circles is the notion that, to fully appreciate music, you have to stop doing anything else and just listen. I disagree.

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

So there’s this “discussion” over on CNET between a couple of editors - Steve Guttenberg and Geoffrey Morrison - on the relative merits of listening to music.  As ever, no-one’s really right and there’s good stuff in both arguments.  However, I would probably side with Geoffrey, not for the whole music to work to, which is background music, which is good etc - but for the fact that I just hate snobs!!!!  Nobody should tell you how to enjoy music - there is no right way or wrong way and what works for you doesn’t have to work for somebody else.  Yes, as with just about anything on the planet, if you learn more about music you’ll appreciate it more but that doesn’t mean you need to or that your current relationship with music is flawed! /rant.


See on cnet.com

Whistle While You Work (but probably not while you edit)

See on Scoop.it - Music to work to

Music is about as dangerous for me as tequila. The last time I drank tequila I was nineteen years old and in Arizona. Well, that’s not true. The last time I remember drinking tequila was in Arizona…

Andrew McCluskey's insight:

I thought this was hilarious and informative all at the same time - who could ask for anything more!?  A writer researches the literature to find out if there really is a benefit to listening to music while you write or edit.  It’s a fun read and exposes the fact that there is so much contradictory information out there, it’s tempting to think that the naysayers and proponents cancel each other out.  He’s smart enough to avoid that pitfall - yes - music sure has an effect - just not always positive.  He decides that on the whole - writing to music makes more sense to him than editing but there are more caveats in the piece than big pharma’s small print.  As the great prophet Brian said “You have to work it out for yourself!”

"….Yes! We have to work it out for ourselves!"

…sigh…


See on michaeljmcdonagh.wordpress.com

Freewrite Your Way to Freedom


Like most Americans, I don’t just drink coffee, I drink copious amounts of coffee because I am usually running on very few hours of sleep. From time to time, I find myself suffering from writer’s block, procrastination, and yes, even sleep deprivation. Never mind the correlation between my sleep patterns and my coffee consumption—that’s not the point of this blog post. Instead of beating yourself up about getting only three hours of sleep, I challenge you to free write your way to problem solve, brainstorm, and meditate.

Sometimes just the right amount of sleep deprivation and caffeine ignite just the right synapses and challenge you to look at the world a little differently (and may even help you solve a problem that has been bothering you for a while.) This exercise works best when your eyelids are heavy and your heart is racing, you are teetering between dreamland and reality, and you can’t seem to think “straight” any longer. This is the perfect time to hash out what’s been swirling around in that head of yours. 

Brew yourself a big pot of your strongest coffee, put on one of the three songs below, power up your MacBook Air, and let your phalanges flow. Try not to censor yourself, the most important thing here is to allow your brain the freedom to work its magic. Let yourself get caught up in the music, avoid using the “delete” button, and keep typing. Type until the song is over. If you still have more to say—put on another song, and then another. There is no right amount of time you can spend doing this nor is there a desired length to reach. At the end of your session, don’t bother trying to make sense of the words on the page. Instead focus on how much lighter you feel, how much more focused you are, and how much more relaxed your breathing is. You’ll be surprised at what you can accomplish after you have completed one of these free-writing sessions. 

By giving your brain permission to work its magic, you can sit back and free flow, free write, dump (if you will) the emotions, stresses, confusions, onto your hard drive. Below I have compiled 3 songs that will help nudge your subconscious in the right direction. 

-Nicole Paulus, Nico New Media

Image Credit: Freewriting by Miles Wickham


Milk by Moderat



Slo by Giraffage



My Only Swerving by El Ten Eleven



Become a free member, download a playlist and freewrite your way to freedom.

julietjacques:

Fennesz - Aus

My favourite piece of music to write to. Taken from the Hotel Paral.lel album (1997).