A study completed by the Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh revealed something amazing, so mind blowing that it should be labeled classified information and kept in some underground vault one mile beneath the earth’s surface protected by 10 foot-thick titanium doors and probably also a dragon:
Musical tastes and personality type are closely related
WOW. I mean, hold your horses there cowboy. You mean to tell me that someone listening to Stan Getz as opposed to someone listening to Sir Mixalot will, in general terms, have different traits of character? I never would’ve guessed.
It was still an entertaining read as I browsed through the BBC’s article covering the story. They made a clever little summary of the praised discoveries:
I’ll admit most traits seem logical or natural but what does all this really help us understand? According to Professor Adrian North who conducted the research, the results could be used for music marketing strategies:
“If you know a persons musical preferences, you can tell what kind of person they are, who to sell to“.
I thought documentaries like ‘Bowling For Columbine’ made it clear to be wary of such generalizations.
“There are obvious implications for the music industry who are worried about declining CD sales“.
I seriously doubt it.
“One of the most surprising things is the similarities between fans of classical music and heavy metal. They’re both creative and at ease but not outgoing. The general public has held a stereotype of heavy metal fans being suicidally depressed and of being a danger to themselves and society in general. But they are quite delicate things.”
What a breakthrough. I won’t have to cross the street when I see a metal fan on the sidewalk anymore. Instead I’ll go offer a hug to the poor delicate thing.
Excuse my sarcasm but I really don’t see what all of this amounts to. More heavy metal fans prefer classical music then Hip-Hop fans do. Big deal. That’s no secret for many people, then again seeing how bluntly they categorized music genres here, we have yet to define what they call heavy metal because that term is somewhat technically obsolete. So if we are referring to metal in the general sense, I’m not sure Slipknot fans will have an interest in Prokofiev but Symphony X fans probably will.
It must have cost a lot of money to interview those 36 000 musics lovers, and it certainly took a lot of time and effort to bring this research to completion – but for what? I’d have a few words for the guy who signed off on this thing. There are other aspects of music and its effect on human behavior that we could study and whose conclusions might actually contribute something to both society and the music industry. For instance, what proportion of a given population actually cares about music and actively seeks to discover new styles, what proportion of the Top40 audience listens to other musical trends than the ones current served by the music industry, or why people don’t open up to other genres then the ones they constantly listen to.
Maybe I’m missing the point here. Feedback is most welcome.