Archivo de la categoría: Unit 07

Why – and How- Music Moves Us

Listening to (or making) music increases blood flow to brain regions that generate and control emotions.2 The limbic system, which is involved in processing emotions and controlling memory, “lights” up when our ears perceive music.3

The chills you feel when you hear a particularly moving piece of music may be the result of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that triggers sensations of pleasure and well-being. 

Music is complex; it involves pitch, timbre, rhythm, dynamics and so much more. Decoding music is quite a task for the brain, as it must “integrate the sequentially ordered sounds into a coherent musical perception,” according to an article published in the Journal of Biology.8

The mental processes involved in knitting individual sounds together into the overall perception of a song is quite similar to the process the brain goes through in reading, which involves first recognizing individual letters and sounds and then ultimately gleaning meaning from sentences and paragraphs. Working memory is involved in both processes, and scientists believe there’s a great deal of overlap between working memory for musical stimuli and for verbal stimuli.9

It may take scientists years to fully untangle music’s actions in the brain. Thankfully, we can enjoy music’s benefits without fully understanding the science.

Do you agree with the author? How do you feel when you listen to music?

Read more at:,when%20our%20ears%20perceive%20music.&text=The%20chills%20you%20feel%20when,of%20pleasure%20and%20well%2Dbeing.