Impact Of Negative And Positive Music

by Nisar Ullah

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veryone listens and loves music and can I blame you? Since ancient times, music has been a form of expression and enjoyment for humans. It freshens the mood or provides relief when we’re sad. Music accompanies us when we drive to or from our office or other works. Furthermore, it revives our parties and makes us dance around.

In short, it’s quite helpful and gives priceless enjoyment. But as every coin has two sides, music also has two sides; joyful and dark. In this article, we’ll focus on both the positive and harmful effects of music. In this article, we’ll focus on both the positive and harmful effects of music.

Adverse Effects of Violent Rap Lyrics:

Photo by Zachary Nelson

Rap music is trending everywhere. Its writing and execution processes are different from the music of other genres. This genre of music is highly associated with violent street gangs worldwide. They use it to glorify crimes, show off, and threaten their rival gangs.

Along with abusing rival singers, rappers use harsh and violent language. Their beats and rhymes encourage listeners to take violent steps, like attacking an enemy, self-injury, or substance abuse. Songs have also been cited as the inspiration for negative, even terrible, behavior.

In the late 1990s, Curtis Lee Walker and Denziss Jackson killed Milwaukee police officer William A. Robertson. According to the men, they were inspired by the late Tupac Shakur’s lyrics in the song “N Gatz We Truss,” in which the rapper glorified killing police officers. One of the men justified his actions by saying he could not get the rapper’s song out of his head.

Another young man, Ronald Ray Howard, was sentenced to death in the late 1990s after killing a Texas state trooper. Howard said that a song on Tupac’s 2PACALYPSE NOW CD played a major role in his decision to kill the officer.

And rappers and their public images contribute to the contradictions and hatred within our communities. 90% of black rappers notoriously compartmentalize their depictions of black Americans, teaching black people to hate each other covertly. Biggies’ 10 Crack Commandments play into harmful stereotypes without questioning them. In 2pac’s How Do You Want It uncut video, an individual is shown urinating in a black woman’s mouth.

How We are Affected By songs

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When we hear music, we assume and imagine. If the music is sad, our thoughts become gloomy and pessimistic. Those assumptions lead to an unhappy environment and mood. When megastars such as Eric Clapton sings ‘Tears in Heaven,’ or Nine Inch Nails writes about  ‘Hurt’ .. as well as R.E.M. – ‘Everybody Hurts’ …and George Jones – ‘He Stopped Loving Her Today,’ you get the point where I am driving.

Promotes Sexual Aggression

A study by Fischer and Greitemeyer indicates that some music promotes aggressive sexual behavior. They did an experiment where a few males and females listened to music. The music had aggressive lyrics against the opposite gender. After listening to aggressive music, the participants were instructed to pour chili sauce into the researchers’ cups. Male participants were more aggressive and poured more sauce to harm the female. While female participants were less affected.

Music Has The Ability To Provide Positive Affirmations

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According to Aristotle, one of the greatest philosophers who ever lived and the first genuine scientist in history immensely impacts the human mind. When exposed to good songs, there’s the option to elevate our moods such as making love to an enduring song while instilling courage and morality qualities. 

And Molly Warren who is a staff at The National Alliance on Mental Illness, (NAMI_ agreed in her article saying.  wrote, “Research shows the benefits of music therapy for various mental health conditions, including depression, trauma, and schizophrenia (to name a few).  Music acts as a medium for processing emotions, trauma, and grief—but music can also be utilized as a regulating or calming agent for anxiety or for dysregulation.”

She says, there are four major interventions with music therapy:

Lyric Analysis

“While talk therapy allows a person to speak about topics that may be difficult to discuss, lyric analysis introduces a novel and less-threatening approach to process emotions, thoughts, and experiences,” she writes. “We all have a song that we deeply connect to and appreciate—lyric analysis provides an opportunity for an individual to identify song lyrics that may correlate with their experience.”

Improvisation Playing

“Playing instruments can encourage emotional expression, socialization, and exploration of various therapeutic themes (i.e. conflict, communication, grief, etc.),” Warren says.

Active Listening

“…Because of its rhythmic and repetitive aspects, music engages the neocortex of our brain, which calms us and reduces impulsivity. We often utilize music to match or alter our mood. While there are benefits to matching music to our mood, it can potentially keep us stuck in a depressive, angry or anxious state. To alter mood states, a music therapist can play music to match the current mood of the person and then slowly shift to a more positive or calm state,” Warren says.

Songwriting

“Songwriting provides opportunities for expression in a positive and rewarding way. Anyone can create lyrics that reflect their own thoughts and experiences, and select instruments and sounds that best reflect the emotion behind the lyrics.”

In short, our choice of music depends on a lot of factors and our maturity levels.  So, in the end, we can’t live without music, and depending on how excessive our tastes are when it comes to music, we might want to add of 90 to 10 ratio of flipping on music that motivates and encourages. 

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