On the opening track off Chance the Rapper’s uplifting new record Coloring Book, Kanye West and the Chicago Children’s Choir join him in singing: “Music is all we got!” Sure, this line is hyperbole, but for hardcore music fans and people who work in the industry, it sometimes feels true. Actually it feels so true that when I read a headline declaring that going to concerts, dancing, and listening to music leads people to report great happiness and satisfaction in their lives. These are just the facts, and yes you can use them to justify your latest expensive concert ticket.
The study was conducted in Australia in 2014 at Deakin University and surveyed 1,000 participants about their live music and communal music listening habits. Overall, those who “engaged with music via dancing or attending musical events” reported greater levels of “subjective well being,” which is how scientist describe the state of being that us civilians call happiness.
An important factor in the study was the emphasis on listening to music while with or around other people–listening alone didn’t have the same positive correlation with increased happiness. So basically the takeaway is that you should go see Chance the Rapper the next time he’s performing and bring your friends with you. Music may feel like it’s all we got, but sharing it with each other is the real blessing. It’s that simple.
(h/t Consequence of Sound)