What Your Music Taste Says About You

There is no doubt that music is a global language enjoyed by millions. The resulting variety of genres and artists have led researchers to deduce an intriguing fact: your taste in music may actually be linked to your personality. Let’s delve into how exactly this may be.

While individual factors can play a role, there are some definitive traits that can be picked up. A study conducted by Cambridge academic Dr. David Greenberg studied over 350,000 participants across 50 countries to determine the extent of correlation. He found specific findings for each preferred genre. For example, those who gravitate towards pop are generally extroverted and conventional. The research also indicated they may be less creative than those who tend to enjoy other musical styles. Classical lovers on the other hand showed strong traits of creativity and healthy self-esteem. It’s likely that the slow, soothing nature of classical tunes complement those who have similarly calm natures. Country fans are interestingly shown to be hardworking and on the conservative side, and generally more emotionally stable than others.

Some linkages were proven to be surprising and against popular belief. Although rock and heavy metal songs involve feelings of anger and aggression, fans in reality tended to be gentle and introverted. Similarly, despite rap/hip-hop often depicting violence, there was no link in such aggressive personality traits of frequent listeners. Those who preferred the indie genre were proven to be intellectual and creative, but with traits of anxiety and low-self esteem. Conversely jazz and blues fans had high self-esteem and were fairly extroverted. Finally, those who gravitated towards dance were extremely assertive and open to new experiences. While this study may not apply to each and every person out there, it is fair to say that we can make reasonably valid judgements about one’s nature (level of creativity, introversion, gentleness etc.) based on their music genre of choice. Perhaps that is why people often are extremely defensive about their preferences – an attack on their choices may reflect an attack on them.