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pop vs. electronic music and personality

deep

TRIBE Member
Do you think that people who listen to comparatively more simplistic music are in general happier people?

I was thinking about this the other day after actually listening to some pop music. Sure it's tripe in terms of substance when compared to electronic music, but that's not the point. Electronic music (regardless of genre) tends to induce introspection, because of its repetitive nature and hypnotic nature (a beat isn't too far removed from the ticking of a clock used in hypnosis).

Not that pop or analog (i.e. band / instrument based) music is not repetitive, because it is. But that those who listen to pop music don't have these expectations of a journey or depth of engagement from their music, they just listen to it as an simple accessory to their happiness. In turn, I wonder if the heightened expectations people have for electronic music is a reflection of their general nature, their need for more, their inability to be satisfied with simple things, and in turn this affecting their personality and disposition.

This isn't just limited to pop vs. electronic music. There are analog genres of music that tend to be breeding or mournful, and regardless of how touching people say they find these songs, their affinity for depressing music isn't because it makes them happy, or complements happiness that already exists. Usually it's just a reflection of self pity or sorrow.

Thoughts?
 

Plato

TRIBE Member
i think pop princesses are just as easily depressed as those who listen to say...trip hop.

but i dont think you can say one group of people is much happier than the other, theres just soo many other factors to take into consideration.

p[l]a+0
 

xtollo

TRIBE Member
This thread is way out of my league.

It did however remind me of that cute pop music quote Cusack says in High Fidelity. Which I don't exactely remember. *quietly sits back and lets this thread go in its own direction*
 
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Cheer Bear

TRIBE Member
The unhappiest people I know, romantically speaking, are the ones who like pop music the most; and I don't know whether pop music has caused this unhappiness, but I do know that they've been listening to the sad songs longer than they've been living the unhappy lives.

:)
 

Plato

TRIBE Member
^^^plus pop music gives people delusions of grandure and what romance shoudl be which are all unattainable goals, so they are more likely to feel bad.

i think?

dammit..its 12:35....and i only have 650 words typed out.... :(

p[l]a+0
 

air-bag

TRIBE Member
somehow electronic music doesnt strike me as very introspective... i think music with lyrics is more likely to be the one that induces introspection...

also we have to determine the cause and the effect: Do you listen to dark/complicated music when you feel sad and/or want to immerse into your thoughts, or is it the other way around?
 

deep

TRIBE Member
but depression cannot exist without intense self analysis or self pity. these kinds of things aren't usually engaged in by people who have relatively shallow emotions. you're a lot less likely to be depressed if you can find some sort of happiness from simple things around you than if you have lofty ideals. (idealism and perfectionism are thought to be two of the core cognitive perspectives underlying depression).

Not to mention the fact that drug usage is a lot more common in the electronic music scene than it is in places where you listen to pop music. And that if people who get into electronic music are looking for something more out of their social lives, that instead of focusing on finding that something within themselves, they use drugs to facilitate their happiness instead, it only makes them more unstable over time.

Is music a reflection of personality, or personality a reflection of music? The relationship is probably interdependant, but at the same time one may be more influential at certain points in life than the other.
 

Bass-Invader

TRIBE Member
i would extend your statements by saying that its not just electronic music which defines a heightened state of music awareness but any eclectic selection of musical tastes.

I find that people who listen solely to pop music tend to not care about music in general very much. To them it is simply ambience in the background, something to grind to with chicks at the bar, or to look good while bopping one's head to in their car.

People who do care about the music they listen to may also have a fair bit of pop music on their playlists, but looking closer one will find also some sections of music not commonly seen. A bunch of baroque period symphonies, or jazz, or miniimalist techno, to have such musics on their list shows they actually fear not to deviate from popular musical tastes, and are actually conscious of what they are listening to.

I see it every day with my roomates. One really digs funk, sade, and other eclectic stuff. The other listens to nothing but bar music, britney and the like. One is rather intelligent, enjoys music, talks about it and tries to make me listen to songs, the other makes no mention of it, never has fun at bars because he is too bent on getting action. Guess what the mapping function is for music -> roomate.
 
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deep

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by air-bag
somehow electronic music doesnt strike me as very introspective... i think music with lyrics is more likely to be the one that induces introspection...
I think that DnB is an exception to the introspective rule, because of its intrinsic breakbeat. The break beat, in and of itself, I think, is usually appreciated by certain types of personalities. Funk, for example, I think, is an indication of personal style. The break, an indicator of personal creativity.

That being said, the repetitive beat genres, like techno/trance/progressive, tend to be pretty introspective in their fundamental rhythmic structure, as well as their macroscopic structure (i.e. progressive and trance tracks have phases that flow into each other, break downs, buildups, etc.).
 

deep

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by Bass-Invader
i would extend your statements by saying that its not just electronic music which defines a heightened state of music awareness but any eclectic selection of musical tastes.


good point

I find that people who listen solely to pop music tend to not care about music in general very much. To them it is simply ambience in the background, something to grind to with chicks at the bar, or to look good while bopping one's head to in their car.
[devil's advocate] Which I'm suggesting isn't necessarily a bad thing. If expectations of deep emotional engagement or complexity in music is an indication of someone's personal bent, then it may not be so bad a thing to expect that what you feel and think in life is basically your own doing, and not something that some other force gives to you. [/devil's advocate]

never has fun at bars because he is too bent on getting action.
I can see and appreciate that. If the appeal of pop music is a reflection of the person's simplicity, or more to the point, lack of development, then yes, it is not a good thing to be listening to it. If however it is an indication of a person's ability to simply take things light hearted, it is a good thing.

But a sense of humour in life is not something that is dependant on the type of music you like.
 

Bass-Invader

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by deep
but depression cannot exist without intense self analysis or self pity. these kinds of things aren't usually engaged in by people who have relatively shallow emotions. you're a lot less likely to be depressed if you can find some sort of happiness from simple things around you than if you have lofty ideals. (idealism and perfectionism are thought to be two of the core cognitive perspectives underlying depression).
this self analysis and self pity can vary in levels, and still affect to a strong degree.

There are many shallow, shallow people who are depressed. They trap their thoughts into a shallow domain of despair, rather than a vast void of philosophical thought. I guess what i mean is, one person will focus on a vast array of very deep and very complex thoughts and become depressed. Another will focus on the fact that they can't afford to party on friday, and they didnt get action at the bar and become depressed, strangely saddened to the same degree as the former person.
 

air-bag

TRIBE Member
deep, I'm not sure how familiar are you with dnb, but it is a very rich genre that has spawned many subgenres within it. Atmospheric drum and bass can be an example for moody melodic music that has a darker break beat element to it. Much like trip hop (same idea) I find it much more suitable for introspective explorations rather than techno or progressive music.

Speaking of techno, I believe that minimal techno is the most potent sub genre for navigation through the dark, tranquil moods that indeed are interconnected with introspection.
 

deep

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by Bass-Invader
There are many shallow, shallow people who are depressed. They trap their thoughts into a shallow domain of despair, rather than a vast void of philosophical thought. I guess what i mean is, one person will focus on a vast array of very deep and very complex thoughts and become depressed. Another will focus on the fact that they can't afford to party on friday, and they didnt get action at the bar and become depressed, strangely saddened to the same degree as the former person.
True dat. It's all very relatively on the emotional valences a person has, what their life experiences are and what they deem as being the best their life could be and the worst that their life has ever been.

That being said, I think that in the electronic music scene we subject ourselves to certain things that increase those valences and push boundaries, and while I of all people am for full throttle attitudes towards experiences, it's probably easier to manage a life in which the spectrum between good and bad isn't quite so big.

Like, if your typical week doesn't involve a drug laden bender and partying until daylight at a club with loud music and instead maybe just watching a movie or listening to some crap pop CD then it's pretty easy to get on with your life the next day.
 
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deep

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by air-bag
deep, I'm not sure how familiar are you with dnb, but it is a very rich genre that has spawned many subgenres within it. Atmospheric drum and bass can be an example for moody melodic music that has a darker break beat element to it. Much like trip hop (same idea) I find it much more suitable for introspective explorations rather than techno or progressive music.


Yeap, I'm a big fan of atmospheric stuff i.e. ltj bukem, future engineers, etc. They definately have more of an introspective element to it. When I say DnB I am usually referring to the stuff that is interchangeably termed jungle, syrous party type sound.

Speaking of techno, I believe that minimal techno is the most potent sub genre for navigation through the dark, tranquil moods that indeed are interconnected with introspection.
Yeap. Just as tribal techno with its more funky percussive sounds and rhythm patterns is more light hearted and less brooding. There is significant variation within genres, I'm just suggesting that certain genres of music are conducive towards certain states of mind, and that unless people keep their minds / ears open to different things it's very easy to fall into the trap of having a certain genre of music subtly define elements of your emotional disposition.
 

Kalemic

TRIBE Promoter
I'm too tired to put much thought into this but I do tend to agree because of the fact that I find electronic is much more likely to stir an emotion or cause a reflection upon a past or upcoming event. I will find myself contemplating certain things that had I been listening to something like Britney it most probably would not have been brought up in my mind.

Although something that I was just talking about with a friend the other day was that for some reason through out my entire life I've never really listened to lyrics. Even if I try to listen to lyrics I find I have to concentrate otherwise my focus just reverts back to melody and beat. I can remember a single guitar, synth, whatever riff from pretty much any song, but can't remember most words to songs to save my life. Those that know me, know this not a simple statement about my memory in that I know my entire music collection and most of my friend's collections completely by memory, names of music included. Seeing as that my mp3s number over 7 thousand and my vinyl collection is farily sizable it seems to be a point of interest (to me, and friends at least) I'm sure since this a like minded message board there are many other people on here who listen to and remember music in a similar way as myself.

Perhaps it is because I instinctivly remember melodys and events attached to them that electronic music plays a larger role to me than pop music which is composed mostly of lyrics does...
 

Bass-Invader

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by air-bag


G33K :)

(taking math/comp sci makes you talk like you take math/comp sci)
it is downright scary how i analyze things sometimes.

Many people have also accused me of being as emotionless as a computer at times because i just never really get...sad...
 

vinder

TRIBE Member
i know i'm prolly gonna get flamed for this, but i'm gonna have to say that drugs has an effect on this situation. drugs are, whether we like it or not, a part of electronic music culture. how many tracks can you think of that are drug related. how many have you heard that make reference to drugs that you've done and you just kinda smirk to yourself because of it.

and GENERALLY, as this does not apply to everyone, you do see people who use drugs go on a bit more of an emotional rollercoaster compared to people who don't. they hit the highest highs, but often hit the lowest lows as well. when listening to music while enhanced, you do get that journey effect, especially out of music that is fairly of the fairly repetitive 4/4 variety. then when you listen to that music while not under the influence, you listen to the music looking for that same effect. sometimes you find it, sometimes you don't. but you are always looking for it. thus expect more from electronic music rather than pop music.

but is electronic music a reflection of people wanting more out of their lives? i personally believe that that wanting effect rubs off into the rest of their lives. you begin to look at things a little differently, and do want more. but i'm not sure if that's a reflection of your personality originally, or if it's more of an after effect induced by your raised expectations of music. ie. you find that you'll want more out of music, now all of a sudden you want more out of life. it's not a direct cause-effect realtionship, IMO, but i think it certainly contributes towards changing your views.

ok, that was long winded so here's a nice little summary. electronic music = drugs = depression :D
 
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deep

TRIBE Member
Well, there are different forms of memory, it's not just a standard attribute of your mind. Memory is best conceptualized as a set of diffuse and distinct processes, that produce the net result of remembering something. But it's those individual processes that produce memory, it's not something that you either have or you don't. You can have superior memory for certain types of information or sensory input and under certain conditions than others.

That being said, I think the point you raise is further proof for how I think that if left unchecked electronic music, or atleast staying too constrained in what you listen to, can emphasize certain attributes over others, and that in the party scene I think people get way too hung up on advancing their expertise in a particular genre of music than they are concerned with broadening their musical interests.

I know recently for me this has been true. I've been listening to a lot of stuff that I wasn't exactly alien to , but if I were to put a percentage to represent the amount of time I listen to this newer stuff than the kind of music I listen to the majority of the time, that percentage would be very small. I realized to myself how much of a reflection certain types of music had been of things I had been thinking, feeling or going through, and that sometimes how a simple change in music can in turn have a change in the momentum of your personality.
 

air-bag

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by deep
I'm just suggesting that certain genres of music are conducive towards certain states of mind, and that unless people keep their minds / ears open to different things it's very easy to fall into the trap of having a certain genre of music subtly define elements of your emotional disposition.

That is a possiblity.
I however tend to think that it is not the music that you listen to that determines your emotional nature, but rather the other way around.

Of course I speak only from my own experience. I have explored a variety of musical genres, yet i have not once settled on one exclusively.

The very fact of my exploration suggests that my changing (also a very important concept. our psyche is not constant but rather contstantly changing) emotional character implores me to adjust the music that i listen to, to my current predominant mood.

If it was the music that was affecting my moods, i would not have explored other genres at all.
 

Deus

TRIBE Member
I find pop music much easier to listen to. I love house music, but sometimes when I'm driving somewhere, I just have to turn on the radio to hear some pop sounds. Listening to electronica tires me sometimes, because I find that I have to pay attention to the tracks more closely to hear it properly.
 

deep

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by Bass-Invader

it is downright scary how i analyze things sometimes.

I don't think it is scary that you think like that.

Mathematics is just basically a system of representation for ways of thinking, processes, with abstract symbols manipulated instead of information or facts.

No stretch of the imagination that advancements in artificial intelligence completely hinge upon mathematical systems.

That being said if you become trained in mathematics or computer science you also start to see how the same kind of structural framework can be applied to any type of association between items.

These are all things that you personally know Chris but I think it bears mentioning for the people who don't have a background in math or computer science.

'mathematics is the language of nature'
 

deep

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by vinder
i know i'm prolly gonna get flamed for this, but i'm gonna have to say that drugs has an effect on this situation. drugs are, whether we like it or not, a part of electronic music culture. how many tracks can you think of that are drug related. how many have you heard that make reference to drugs that you've done and you just kinda smirk to yourself because of it.


If you get flamed for this I will flame back whoever is spouting off at you :)

People forget the origins of the electronic music scene. While music is the kind of thing that gets its influences from many many sources, it cannot be denied that many of the predecessor genres to electronic music today were structured the way they were because of the synergy between those musical structures and drug experiences. Acid house, hardcore/rotterdam, etc. Again, this is not to say that the innovations that helped to allow electronic music to come to be (i.e. synths, drum machines, etc.) were invented with the purpose of complementing drug experiences, just that part of electronic music's development definately did and still does rely upon the fact that people do drugs at parties and clubs.

but is electronic music a reflection of people wanting more out of their lives? i personally believe that that wanting effect rubs off into the rest of their lives. you begin to look at things a little differently, and do want more. but i'm not sure if that's a reflection of your personality originally, or if it's more of an after effect induced by your raised expectations of music. ie. you find that you'll want more out of music, now all of a sudden you want more out of life. it's not a direct cause-effect realtionship, IMO, but i think it certainly contributes towards changing your views.
I think both influence each other at the same time. Just that the tendency for people who are introduced to the electronic music scene is to go further and further in it, than it is to keep their experiences still open. I.E. when was the last time you went to a crappy bar with friends and just drank and listened to crappy music. Not that that is the type of experience that expands you, but it's just significantly different from what people typically espouse as being a great club night, and that once people get the taste of a good thing they usually run it into the ground rather than make sure that they keep their experiences diverse.
 
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