The Talon

A Student’s Analysis of Music and Social Groups

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Photo Credit: Download

Matthew Herr, Staff Writer

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People of today give most music a bad wrap. The bar that people have to meet when it comes to music they listen to has grown wrather high, and if you don’t enjoy a certain genre of music you are criticized and judged. The standards of music apply to everyone in every genre, and everyone is at least a little guilty of this.

Being a fan of rock, metal, and country music, I am no exception to judging people based on their taste in music. When meeting a new person, the genre of music they most enjoy is generally the first thing I ask. I have come to realize that I don’t affiliate myself with people who listen to rap or pop music because of my own hatred for the genre. However, while I do judge, I am also judged based on my music choices; a few days ago I was having a conversation on certain kinds of music that I enjoyed, and I had mentioned country. The person I was talking to immediately called me disgusting. This shows that while criticism based on musical choice definitely doesn’t apply to everyone it definitely applies to a large amount of people.

Affiliation with people of similar tastes of music is easy. Go into any high school lunchroom and look around. Each and every friend group is based at least a little on music choice. People who listen to rock are more likely to hang around people who like rock over rap. Building a friendship with people who listen to the same genre of music can come easier to you. I have met and made plenty of friends purely based on our taste in music alone. I’ve met a man named Riley Spencer after he read my article on a band that we both equally enjoyed: Five Finger Death Punch.  

Listening to a new genre of music may open your eyes to a new group of people. Before listening to metal music I never would have developed a strong relationship with my friends. If I had listened to Rap I may be entirely different from who I am today. Listening to certain genres shape and form your personality in ways that nothing else could. Someone who grows up that never listens to music is missing part of their personality, because music teaches us what is and isn’t culturally and socially acceptable.

While music can teach people morals or bring together friends, it can also break down friendships and sway people to do things they wouldn’t otherwise do. People can be swayed by music in good and bad ways, which can be seen through mosh pits at metal concerts. Mosh pits are an exclusive to metal and rock concerts. The violent fast-paced atmosphere that rock and metal put off energize people and motivate them to move and fight in ways that things like country can’t. Relationships can also be broken through music. My last relationship was ended when I heard a song that persuaded me to leave the girl and pursue a better life plan. Without music to aid me I may have never left, and could have still been in a relationship that I now know was bad for me.

The importance of the genre of music that people enjoy has affected lives in many ways. Choices of music can form or destroy friendships and relationships. Music has the ability to energize a crowd and inspire confidence. It teaches people right from wrong, and forms the person they become. Many people would be entirely different were there choices in music different— whether it be something as small as a different choice in restaurant to anything as big as a different set of political views or level of income. Without music the world as we know it wouldn’t exist.

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A Student’s Analysis of Music and Social Groups