During Thanksgiving break, I saw this video. It is a really interesting video which shows the “power” of adele’s “Hello” in an exaggerate way. But it can also reflect the popularity of this song. Incredibly, “Hello,” was played more than one million times per hour in the two days following its release. Someone has said we cannot escape this song! I can’t help think why people are so interested in this song? And people may not only interested in “Hello” , but also the sad songs. It seems paradoxical, how do people feel when they listen to sad songs?
A recent study done by researchers at the Freie Universitat Berlin in Germany shows that sadness is not the most frequent emotion evoked by sad songs. Nostalgia is. Sad songs will make people retrieving memories of valued past events. Someone may think all kinds of music can make it, I was wondering this problem at first. So in this study, researchers also consider different kinds of music and investigate how different music evokes people’s emotion. The result here means that comparing to happy music sad songs are more possible to take people back to that moment.
What’s more, the music-evoked sadness will have positive effects. Firstly, it affects emotional regulation. In this study, some people like to listen to sad music when being in a positive mood or emotional state, so sad music can help them to control their mood.But happy music is more powerful in this part.Secondly, sad music make them feel more empathy about other people.The stories you heard in songs help you understand other’s feeling better and makes you become more peaceful and tender. Happy music can not evoke empathy as much as sad songs do according to study’s result. So this reward of music-evoked sadness is important. Another important reward is that “sad music lets listeners experience sadness without the “real-life” implications”. Nobody really want to experience sad things, but this implication can let them release the real life pressure and relaxed in this “music world” for a little while. in the study this feeling is much more stronger when you listen to sad music than happy music. The forth reward is imagination. It is almost the same as you listen to happy music.
The study involved more than 700 people, including western and eastern. It also considered age and gender to make sure the subject is random and large. And the study not only focused on how people feel when they listen to sad music but also compare to happy music. It makes the study more critically. Without comparison, we can hardly say that the impact is because of music or only sad music. But the data is based on an online survey which was completely voluntary and anonymous. No financial compensation was provided. It makes this more objective.