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Musical Resources
  • The Strength of Music to Create Joy
  • Mary Brainerd
The Strength of Music to Create Joy

Music has been known to create connections, change our mood, bring out memories.  Parents often sing lullabies to their babies who would never sing any other time.  We sing for birthdays, sing holiday carols, and add music to other important moments.

There's been hundreds of studies relating to the biological benefits of music.  Singing specifically together in a group reduces the stress hormone cortisol, releasing endorphins, and one study shows that singers heartbeats sync up in a group!  (JWPepper)  Studies have also shown that music can prompt the release of the “feel good” neurotransmitter dopamine, which is commonly triggered by life-sustaining activities like eating. Researchers from McGill University found in their study that the dopamine released while listening to music can trigger strongly positive emotions, including euphoria.

Beyond the science, there is an almost innate sense that music does so much for both individuals and a community. David Kim, concertmaster for the Philadelphia Orchestra, says because of this, the arts are vitally important for children.

“It does something for the soul. It can’t just be about eating, drinking, sleeping, playing, riding your bike – it has to be more,” Kim said. “Otherwise you end up in environment where you have a kind of cultural ghetto, meaning if they don’t have the arts and culture in their lives, I feel like they have a dry spot in their heart.”

  • Mary Brainerd

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