An article in Vice, entitled Why Doesn’t Music Give Me Goosebumps Anymore?” written from the perspective of a 29 year old, got me thinking.
I’m not a typical music consumer – I “sell” music – I explore – I breath new music – I am a radio show producer, a musician, a talent buyer and promoter – and NEW MUSIC still gives me goosebumps.
The author doesn’t reflect anecdotally either, inviting Tom ter Bogt from the University of Utrech to answer some questions. Tom conducts research into the development of music taste and youth culture and he does make some points worth considering.
I’ve known for years, for example, that when people hit the ripe old age of 24, they become largely disinterested in new music and from that point forward tend to rely on revisiting music and musicians they heard between the ages of 14-22. Research confirms it.
I’ve always suspected, without empirical proof, that even when someone does like something new, it’s connected to music and feelings from when we were 14-22.
Much of today’s music is based on styles that preceded it – and much of what older 50-70 year olds recall as “classic rock.” So I would think some Gen X and Boomers might like some new music.
The Colorado Playlist fanbase is largely 35-54, hardly what you’d call an age range for new music lovers. The average professional musician in the US is 44, according to Alan B. Krueger, author of Rockonomics: what the music industry can teach us about economics (and our future). I have to assume then, by way of correlation, that a lot of the fans of the Colorado Playlist are at least semi-professional musicians (?)
So what is it that gives me goosebumps? As a musician I can say that there’s intense excitement in performing or recording. It’s when I hear a well written and arranged song, sung with sincere emotion that the hair follicles start to twitch.
It’s when I sense the excitement in the music that I feel excited myself. That’s when the hair follicles become goosebumps and I’m reminded of why and how I fell in love with music to begin with as a child.