How Do Your Music Preferences Influence Your Personality?

We listen to music as a way to set the mood, gain inspiration or motivate ourselves for a workout. But how much are those choices that we make influenced by our underlying personality traits?

Music plays an important role in our lives, which is the reason why people wonder what individual factors influence the preference of music. Could the music people have on their playlist tell us something about their personality?

There is a large-scale study that looked at more than 36,000 participants worldwide. It was conducted by researchers at Heriot-Watt University, and they asked the participants to rate around 104 styles and used that as an offering of information about their personality. The researchers can find out more information than the details you may provide to a writing service for personal statements for college.

Just as teachers can tell more about the students from the essay writing style and format, the scientists can tell more just by knowing your interests. Also If the researchers can discover what the songs you are listening to around campus say about us now, they will be able to find out more about us as individuals in the future.

People’s Tastes in Music

According to Adrian North, one of the researchers, the reason behind why some people are defensive about their taste may relate to how much it relates to their personality and attitude. He suggests that people define themselves through music and even relate to others. Although, keep in mind that all of those results are from one study, then replicated into books and studies and validated by many other researchers in their own style, and now are used as part of education. The following are the certain musical styles that link people to specific personality traits.

Pop Music

Fans of pop music tend to be honest, extroverted, and conventional. They have high self-esteem and are hardworking. However, they tend to be more uneasy and less creative.

Hip/Hop and Rap Music

There are many stereotypes that people who listen to rap are violent or aggressive, although the research didn’t find such a connection. On the contrary, Rap lovers are very outgoing and have high self-esteem.

Country Music

County music lovers are conventional, hardworking, and outgoing. Country is often centered on love and heartbreak, although the people listening to them tend to be very emotionally stable. Also, they are more conservative and are less open to new experiences.

Classical Music

People listening to music that is described as classical are with ease with themselves and the world around them. They are more introverted but are creative and have normal self-esteem.

Heavy Metal and Rock Music

Rock and Heavy Metal often project an aggressive image, but despite that fact, the researchers found out that the people listening to this kind of music are very gentle. They are very creative but sometimes can be introverted and have low self-esteem.

Indie Music

People listening to music such as Indie are typically creative, intellectual, and introverted. However, they are also less gentle and less hardworking, and other characteristics that describe them are anxiousness, passivity, and low self-esteem.

Dance Music

People that enjoy dance music are very assertive and outgoing. They are also ranked high in their openness to experience new things but are ranked low in gentleness compared to other genres.

Blues, Jazz, and Soul

People who love this music genre have high self-esteem and are more extroverted. You can find them in art, crafts, or writing courses because they are intelligent, creative, and at ease with themselves and the ones around them.

What the Research Says

While many studies state that musical tastes can be amazing predictors of personality traits, some researchers still don’t agree.

Predictions of Personality Traits

Sam Gosling and Jason Rentfrow suggest that knowing your favorite type of music can give you many personality predictions. They find out that people can make accurate judgments about someone else’s level of creativity, extroversion, and open-mindedness just by listening to a couple of their favorite songs.

Music and Cognitive Styles

In fact, another study states that our taste connects to how our brains process information. They suggest that there are two ways in which we respond to the world, systematizing, which involves interacting based upon conceptions of how other people think that we should respond, and emphasizing, which involves the ability to respond to the world based on social cues. The researchers of this study found out that the empathizers would most likely enjoy contemporary emotionally rich music, such as indie-rock, country, and folk. Or more intense, complex, and energetic. On the other hand, the systematized ones tend to choose career paths in science and math and are enjoying the structural complexity of music such as jazz, classical, and world music.


Also, the next time you are creating a new playlist that fills up with your favorite songs. Think about how your personality might be reflected through those choices. Also, you should consider listening to music styles that are not your first choice from time to time because researchers state that doing this can have a positive, long-lasting impact on your brain.

Show More

Related Articles