Importance of music – We possess the gift of hearing sounds in nature. We can create, identify, and repeat patterns in different sequences to make a continuous sound.
Music contains harmonies and rhythms. Music has been a part of human civilization since prehistoric times.
There are cave paintings, dating back to the prehistoric era, depicting groups of people playing music.
Music is found in our surroundings. All living things can detect naturally occurring rhythms in sounds. Simple things like foot tapping or clanking pen on a tabletop are music.
With the help of modern technology, artists can make music in newer and more innovative ways than ever before.
In the present day and age, computers play a significant role in creating music. There are entire genres of music born out of digital sounds.
An individual’s taste in music depends on a lot of factors, and it evolves for their lifetime.
In this article, we want to talk about the different forms and the importance of music in our lives.
We will look at three cultural forms of music and their sub-genres to enrich the discussion.
Importance of Indian music and its types:-
Indian classical music is one of the oldest forms of musical traditions in the Indian subcontinent.
Historically, the classical music in India is either Hindustani (North Indian) or Carnatic (South Indian).
Indian classical music is rich in its use of instruments. Typically, instruments like sitar, sarod, tanpura, veena, bansuri, violin, tabla, and santoor.
One of the earliest composers of Carnatic music was Purandaradasa in the 15th century.
Purandar Das is the grandfather (Pitamah) of Carnatic music because his music theory gave birth to the Carnatic style of Indian classical music.
Similarly, Hindustani classical began around the 14th or the 15th century in the Northern kingdoms of India.
One of the most influential music composers of Hindustani music was Tansen in the 16th century.
Importance of Indian classical music-
Classical music is soothing to listen to on a quiet day. It exudes positive energy.
Studies have shown that classical music is helpful while performing tasks from memory.
Indian classical music trains the cognitive functions of the brain directly responsible for memorizing actions and events.
Also, classical Indian music lowers the heart rates according to several studies performed on the Mozart Effect.
It is important to note that classical music does not affect an individual’s I.Q. (Intelligence Quotient).
Classical music helps in reducing the blood pressure and keeping the mind under the least amount of possible stress.
Religion has always been a major part of Indian culture. The earliest evidence of devotional music in India dates back to the 14th century.
Bhakti (devotional) movement was spreading quickly across the Central and Northern regions of India from the 14th century until the 17th century.
The religious movement kept spreading across different parts of the country. This gave rise to different styles of devotional music from all over India.
Devotional music in Indian culture belongs to different categories.
Some of these categories are Bhajan, Kirtan, Shyama Sangeet, and modern Bhakti music.
Bhajan is a popular form of devotional music in the Hindu and Sikh tradition.
Bhajan refers to the sharing of ideas and concepts. Commonly, the sharing of ideas takes place in the form of songs.
Kirtan is a narration of an ideology in a musical format. It involves a group of performers reciting religious and spiritual anecdotes on the stage to the audience with the help of musical instruments.
Shyama Sangeet is a specific genre of music from the Eastern part of India. It dedicates songs to their regional Goddess Durga.
Modern devotional music combines elements of pop music with the traditional chants and bhajans. It is a widely popular musical form in India.
While religion is a personal matter of belief; as a result, devotional music serves the followers of a religion in different ways.
Listeners of devotional music testify to achieving spiritual unity with the universe. It is useful in several meditation practices and public worship rituals.
Importance of devotional music
Scientifically, research studies suggest that devotional music helps in attaining calmness of mind.
India is the seventh-largest in the country in terms of its size, and it’s rich in cultural diversity, mainly because of its size.
In the land of cultural enrichment, groups of people have their own ways to express emotions through music and dance.
The history of folk music is and has been for centuries, affluent in India.
As there are thousands of folk music forms in India, we’ll discuss one musical style from each of the main regions of the country, namely North, South, East, and West.
The most prominent form of folk music in Northern India is Bhangra. It is set in an increasingly fast beat of drums.
Dandiya is Western folk music, including rhythmic beats and claps. Its theme is religious and folklore.
Bihugeet is the gift from Assamese culture in the East to India. It involves drums, and its theme revolves around nature, love, and humor.
Kummi Pattu, originally from the Southern part of India, is a popular form of folk music during festivals.
Folk music serves the purpose of promoting unity. It brings people from similar traditional values and customs together.
Also, it acts as a medium for integrating people into a new culture.
Importance of Indian Folk music –
Folk music helps in expressing pride, love, camaraderie, appreciation, sorrow, laughter, and merry. It is a diverse form of expression.
indian folk music is suitable for events like weddings, birthdays, festivals, and funerals. It celebrates the cultural beliefs of different groups of people.
Folk music teaches us a lot of things about different cultures and their traditions.
Bollywood is the most significant movie industry in the world. It produces more than 300 movies on an average per year, and its gross revenues in 2019 were more than $2.5 billion.
A unique of movies produced in Bollywood is the presence of musical numbers in every movie. It differentiates Bollywood from other movie industries across the world.
It is a common notion that music in Bollywood movies, filmi music, is the most popular form of music for a large number of Indians.
The diversity of songs, artists, performers, and lyricism contributes to the widespread fame of Filmi music.
A BBC report from 2009 suggests that about 72% of music sales in the Indian market arise from the filmi music genre.
Filmi music has been a part of the Indian cinema since its formative years. At first, filmi music was synonymous with classical (Hindustani and Carnatic) Indian music.
However, over the years, filmi music became its own genre. In the 1940s, filmi music was a group effort, including music directors, playback singers, and lyricists.
The songs were acting like a soundtrack to scenes in the movie, adding to their popularity. This concept became immensely popular over the years.
Filmi music gave us icons in music direction like S.D. Burman and A.R. Rahman.
Filmi music’s popularity is spreading across the world. The dynamics of the songs are amazing.
The songs capture different moods and themes. Therefore, there are songs for a large number of settings.
Importance of Filmi music
The variety of filmi music is endless and evolving. Filmi music is useful for relaxing, celebrating, thinking, dancing, and expression.
It can put listeners in a good mood and alleviate anxiety. Also, it helps in improving performance in some cases.
Pop music aims to appeal to the masses. It contains easily digestible beats.
The lyrics are simple. Anyone can sing the songs. These are the factors that add to the appeal of pop music.
Generally, we like to sing along with songs when they are playing through the speakers.
Pop music provides a catalog of songs with a simple rhythm.
Indian pop has several aliases like Indi pop, I-pop, and Hindi pop.
It has a smaller audience in India since it is independent of the Filmi music scene.
Also, Indian pop musicians may transition to Flmi music for mainstream popularity and broadening their mass appeal.
The growing popularity of MTV music channel in the early part of the 1990’s gave rise to I-pop in India.
Independent artists with plenty of talent began producing music hoping for public recognition through MTV.
The song production was inexpensive. The earlier success of Indian pop music was built on artists like Usha Uthup.
Wave after wave of artists became famous because the popularity of independent music in India grew exponentially.
Some of these artists are still popular in the mainstream music scene like Shaan, Daler Mehndi, K.K., Lucky Ali, Sonu Nigam, and Sunidhi Chauhan.
Several mainstream artists were dabbling in Indian pop music scene like the legendary Asha Bhosle.
The list of famous playback singers starting independently in the pop music scene is long and ever-growing.
Importance of Pop Music –
Pop music’s essence is its fun nature. It is suitable for playing in gyms and parties alike.
Pop music is convenient for playing karaoke with a group of friends. It raises the mood and releases endorphins for cheering up the listeners.
It provides a platform for musicians to display their talent economically. Also, it affords artists a path to build their career in the music industry.
Importance of Western music
Western Classical Music
Western classical music has a long-standing history. It is rich with symphonies that were written centuries ago.
The roots of Western classical music are in Europe. Classical music is a form of art music dating back to the ancient music period (before 500 A.D.).
Classical music underwent many changes since the end of the Renaissance era.
The current classical music derives many of its characteristics from the Classical Era in the history of mankind.
This form of music was synonymous with the upper echelon of the society in the past. Mainly, classical music was for people with interests in lavish lifestyles.
We are familiar with iconic names in Classical music like Mozart and Beethoven.
The compositions in this era laid the foundation for present-day concerto and orchestral settings. We’re living in the age of the post-modern and contemporary period of classical music.
The classical music instruments and their formation plays a vital role in the quality of the symphony.
Typically, a classical music band has different sections like woodwind, brass, string, and percussion. In the contemporary era, the keyboard section is a common feature of the band.
Importance of Western Classical Music-
There are a variety of scientific research and studies on the effects of classical music.
Classical music relieves pain and normalizes blood pressure. It can improve an individual’s memory.
Western classical music inspires creative thinking. It counteracts stress, anxiety, and insomnia.
Classical music helps in relaxing and evokes a variety of emotional responses.
Studies have shown that classical music helps people to overcome their social anxiety.
Generally, listening to classical music increases dopamine levels. A rise in dopamine levels leads to feeling happy.
Listening to classical music enhances the quality of leisure time.
Western Pop Music –
As the name suggests, pop music is an art form that aims to please the masses.
The songs in the pop music genre are simple. The songs distinctly lack complexity and creativity.
The appeal of pop music comes from the songs being easy to sing along with.
Songs from former pop music idols like Michael Jackson are still popular in night clubs and proms.
The simplistic nature of the songs in pop music makes them listenable on loops.
Often, the lyrics talk about the common issues of teenagers and adolescents.
Pop music appeases people of many age groups like pre-teens, teenagers, adults, and elders.
Honestly, it is the music of the masses, and the large sales of pop music in the market proves that.
It is the largest music industry in the world and boasts of an avid fan following. The creation of the pop music genre dates back to the 1950s. Generally, the songs are between three and five minutes in length.
The format of most pop songs is the chorus following the rhymes in repetition.
With the evolution of technology, pop music underwent stylistic changes over the past few decades.
Pop music was in decline during the 70’s and 80’s. The internet boom during the 90’s and 00’s led to another upward trend in the popularity of the pop music genre.
Mainly, the music now involves digital tones and vocal tracks containing auto-tune.
Some of the most famous artists in pop music include Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Taylor Swift, and Lady Gaga.
Despite its criticism, there are many reasons for the success of popular music.
While purists may find the lack of creativity in pop music annoying, the masses enjoy listening to it.
Importance of Western Pop Music
Pop music provides a natural high through the release of dopamine. Often, gyms across the world play pop music because it boosts cardio performance.
It counteracts anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
There have been several successful studies linking creativity with listening to pop music.
Rock and roll music has been around for decades. Its beginning is traceable back to the 1950’s. Rock music is a broad definition of the art form.
It contains different genres and subgenres. Its popularity spans across the world, and each country has their own versions of rock music genres.
Usually, rock music involves a band of musicians playing electric or acoustic guitars, bass guitar, drums and a lead singer on the vocals.
The number of musicians differs from one band to another. Typically, a band consists of 4-6 members creating music.
The most popular forms of rock music are classic, hardcore, punk, metal, progressive, and alternative rock.
Early rock music was similar to jazz and blues music genres. One of the earlier stars of rock music was Elvis Presley before the Beatles’ mania took over the world of music.
A band from the United Kingdom, the Beatles became tremendously popular by making songs appealing to the masses.
The 70’s saw the rise of psychedelic rock due to the bands experimenting with more than just the instruments.
The metal and grunge rock eras in the 80’s and 90’s have brought us to the current generation of rock music.
We have more rock music and its sub-genres than ever.
Progressive and metalcore rock bands seem to have the most appeal at present.
Rock music appeals to niche audiences. There are overlaps in the listeners between different sub-genres of rock.
Importance of Rock Music –
Studies show rock music listeners share similar personality traits with listeners of classical music.
The main benefit of listening to rock music is the mood lift it provides to the listeners.
It helps in relieving stress and anxiety. In terms of the exercise, attending a rock concert is like working out in a gym for about 90 minutes.
The lyrics in rock songs are introspective. The creativity in several sub-genres, like progressive and psychedelic rock, is inspirational.
Hip hop and rap
Hip hop is based on the funky music genres from the early 1950s. Rap music is an art form of rhyming words over the music beats. Hip hop became popular in the 1970s.
Often, hip hop describes a mindset instead of a music genre. There are multiple sub-genres of hip hop music.
Typically, hip hop songs include a rapper, turntables, D.J. mixer, and keyboard. The creative rhymes in hip hop music are outstanding. Hip hop music is entertaining, fast, and creative.
The history of hip hop introduces us to two different schools of thought. East coast rap scene includes rappers from New York and adjacent regions producing their brand of jazz-rap music.
West coast rap music involves rappers from Los Angeles and adjoining cities rapping on funkier sounding beats.
The common themes of hip hop songs revolve around gangs, lifestyle, cars, women, money, and society.
There are many rappers famous for raising concerns and awareness of societal problems. Predominantly, the hip hop music scene includes people of the African-American community and youth from the Caribbean islands.
The legendary artists in hip hop music include Tupac Shakur, Eminem, Jay-Z, Snoop Dogg, and The Notorious B.I.G.
There are many benefits of listening to hip hop music. Emotionally, hip hop transports listeners to a different place.
Rap songs often carry important messages for teenagers and adults.
They provide the listeners with an insight into growing up under strict circumstances.
They encourage people to learn from their mistakes to stay on the right side of the tracks in society.
On a lighter note, dance clubs play hip hop music to engage the audience.
Hip hop beats are perfect sounds for moving one’s body rhythmically. Hip hop music gives listeners a sense of euphoria.
Country music is a Western form of folk music. Its other names include country and western and hillbilly music.
There are samples of jazz music, too, in country music. Like most forms of folk music, country music has dance songs and ballads.
It includes simple folk lyrics and instantly appealing music. Folk music became popular during the 1940s during the Second World War.
Usually, the instruments in folk music are of the string variety. Banjos and acoustic guitars are a common feature of the country songs.
Also, fiddles and mouth organs are common in hillbilly music. Originally, country music is traceable to the Southern part of the United States.
Eastern Tennessee in the U.S. is the home to country music. Country music shows take place in stadiums seating more than 50000 people together.
Usually, country music performers are musicians with a guitar or banjo.
They possess the ability to play the guitar and sing the song simultaneously. The lyrical content of country songs is thought-provoking.
Although, there are many songs without deeper meanings to the words and only emphasizing on merriment.
Country music has world-famous artists like Johnny Cash and Garth Brooks. The most appealing part of the genre is the digestibility of the songs.
Usually, the pacing of the song is slower than in other genres. There is a heavy emphasis on the lyrical matter.
Importance of Country Music –
Country music is preferable for quiet nights with some quality whiskey to go along.
If you like to listen to music focusing on the lyrical matter over other aspects, country music is the best option.
Besides, listening to country music has many benefits. It helps in dealing with stress and depression.
The smooth undertones of country music help the listener to calm down. Also, country music is an expression of the feeling of love.
It increases the production of endorphins and the happiness quotient of the listeners.
Jazz is one of the oldest forms of contemporary music. Its origin is traceable to the latter part of the 19th century.
Its roots are in the African-American communities of New Orleans in the United States.
Jazz music has since undergone multiple changes. There are different subgenres of jazz music like Avant-garde, bebop, Latin, and progressive jazz.
At present, jazz music is available in many different fusion forms like acid, smooth, nu, and Mambo.
Jazz shares feature with funky, blues, and reggae music. An important aspect of jazz music is its variety of musical instruments.
Typically, jazz songs involve a combination of saxophones, bass guitars, trombone, piano, and flutes.
In the present times, keyboards, synthesizers, and drum machines are standard features of a jazz song.
The most prominent artists in Jazz music include Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, and Frank Sinatra.
Importance of Juzz Music –
Jazz music has been scientifically proven to contain frequencies for inspiring or relaxing our minds.
Therefore, the benefits of jazz music vary from alleviating stress to focusing on studies.
Jazz music helps in improving memory, lowering blood pressure, and fighting migraines. Subgenres of jazz, like nu jazz, contain lo-fi hip hop beats for assisting students in improving concentration.
Electronic Dance Music (E.D.M.) is a contemporary branch of music, including different subgenres.
The subgenres of E.D.M. include house, techno, breakbeat, trance, and dubstep.
E.D.M. is part of the night clubs and dance clubs. The songs encompass mixing multiple songs, seamlessly, into one another.
The increasing popularity of night clubs is responsible for the worldwide success of the E.D.M. genre.
E.D.M. or dance music’s popularity went up during the early part of the 1990s.
The songs do not involve traditional musical instruments.
Instead, technological equipment like keyboards, turntables, synthesizers, and digital drums create the music in E.D.M.
The genre of E.D.M. is heavily reliant on software upgrades for the evolution of its music. Usually, the songs lack the vocals of a singer.
Night clubs use strobe lighting and dry ice effects to accompany the music.
The songs borrow from several other genres like hip-hop, disco, and reggae music.
The artists alter the speed of the songs to achieve matching tempos between different songs and create a seamless track for partying.
Some of the most prominent E.D.M. artists include Skrillex, Deadmau5, David Guetta, and The Chainsmokers.
In all honesty, E.D.M. music and its subgenres appeal to a niche audience.
The places playing different forms of E.D.M. cater to people using chemical substances.
E.D.M. helps people with different substances to improve their experience. It is a stress reliever.
E.D.M. helps in burning calories because the songs are made for dancing.
Like country music, blues music starts from the Southern part of the United States of America around the latter part of the 19th century.
Unlike country music, blues music has its roots in the African-American communities of the Deep South.
Blues music shares characteristics with many music genres like jazz, rhythm, rock and roll and, country music.
Traditionally, blues music includes spiritual, work, chants, and recitals.
Typically, guitar, piano, harmonica, blues harp, and bass drums create the music for blues songs.
In the earlier part of the 20th century, blues music revolves around the themes of war, oppression, and hope.
Pre-war blues gave birth to the Urban Blues music in the 1950s. Muddy Waters was the father of modern blues music.
The genre predominantly contains men and women of an African-American descent up until the 1970s.
The modern blues music genre legends include B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Zucchero.
Importance of Blues music
Blues music has the power to evoke feelings and touch the soul. It has close relations to the mood of the listener.
Emotionally, blues is a medication for souls that have been hurt.
It allows the listener to link their mind, body, and soul through the power of music.
Careful listening to the old blues music outlines the struggles and spirit of the African-Americans in the Deep South.
Also, blues music plays a key role in the evolution of many other forms of music.
Orchestra is an assembly of musical instruments from different families.
The assembly includes string instruments (violin, double bass, and cello), brass instruments (trumpet, trombone, and horn), percussion instruments (triangle, snare, and bass drum), and wind instruments (flute, clarinet, and saxophone).
The number of musicians playing an orchestra differs from one group to another.
The factors deciding the size of the orchestra include the size of the venue and the musical work.
Usually, orchestras play in concert halls like the famous Culture and Congress Centre Concert Hall in Lucerne, Switzerland.
An orchestra includes a conductor and different band sections.
The conductor’s job is to orchestrate the different band sections following the musical work.
The musical playing of different band sections creates a soothing symphony. It is an implicit form of expressing emotions.
The first orchestra concerts date back to the 17th century in the Baroque era.
Typically, the orchestra performances in the past were meant for royalty and aristocrats. There was never a mass appeal for orchestra concerts.
With the increase in several music genres, orchestras rely on government intervention and Internet streaming for generating revenues.
Orchestra music is beneficial to listeners in different ways.
It improves concentration, memory, and, in some cases, intelligence.
It has a positive impact on reasoning and algebraic skills.
It helps in building patience and discipline because most orchestra music requires time to reach climax.
A chant is a derivative of the Latin word “cantare” (to sing).
It involves reciting words in different pitches and intonations to incite mixed feelings.
Chants may seem like an odd form of music. However, chants vary from simple songs to complex musical patterns. The most popular type of chanting is the Gregorian chant.
Gregorian chants have been around since the 9th century in the middle and western parts of Europe.
They were sung in churches and chapels by choir boys.
Since it is an ancient form of music, chanting had to undergo a resurgence in the 20th century to gain some of its older popularity back.
Chants are an acapella form of singing. In other words, chanting requires no musical instruments.
The music is a derivative of the pitch and intonation of the recitation. The practice of chanting was spread across different cultures.
They were popular forms of spiritual practice for African, Hawaiian, Native American, Hindu, and Islamic cultures.
Buddhist monks and Hindu saints use different forms of chanting for traditional purposes.
Importance of Chants –
Chants have been around for more than a thousand years.
The main reason for their existence is their application in healing.
For centuries, people have put their faith in the healing powers of the chants.
Also, chants serve the purpose of meditation practices. There are several studies and testimonies to prove the positive effects of chanting on our health.
Music is an essential part of our day to day lives.
We may prefer specific genres of music over others at different times in our lives.
As we grow, so do our tastes in music. Music has many inherent benefits for listeners.
We may not notice these effects directly, but the feelings still linger after listening to music.
For example, the next time you find yourself engaging in a stressful activity, play some music.
There is a high likelihood of the music affecting your moods positively. The catalog of music is infinite.
The sounds are present in nature. They are present in our man-made world.
It takes painkillers and antidepressants to relieve our stress. In the present day and age, concentration spans are growing shorter by the minute.
The sensory overload leads to reducing our memory. Music can solve all of these problems and more.
It can positively affect the generation of hormones in our bodies to feel happier.
It is easier than ever before to listen to music from different parts of the world.
Also, the music is always a few clicks of the mouse button away.
The importance of music increase exponentially due to our abilities and convenience of accessing it.
Music plays a big role in our lives. It is impossible to determine the impact of new music on an individual’s mind.
Therefore, it is essential to keep looking for newer sounds.
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