Why do we love music? Why can music move us to tears or arouse us to a state of euphoria?
According to scientists, listening to music stimulates the same areas of the brain that are stimulated by good food or sex - the same areas involved with reward, emotion and arousal. We tend to consider our biological responses to external stimuli in terms of conveying an evolutionary advantage.
So why would we respond to a series of sounds in the same way we might respond to nourishment or engaging in the act required to perpetuate the species? Did we link melodic bird song to a tasty skewer of fire grilled squab? Was the gentle babble of a brook linked to the pleasurable sensation of a refreshing drink of cool water?
Maybe it has more of a socio-emotional link. Perhaps after a particularly enjoyable feast of wild beast our buddy Thog started banging a couple sticks together, the men began a low rhythmic chant and the cave ladies chirped in with a lovely high warble of pleasure in the food, the community... the moment. Song has also been used as a method of storytelling over the years bringing to life the actions and emotions of past moments of pleasure, pain and glory.
Different styles of music affect each of us differently likely as a result of the music that was the soundtrack to emotional moments of our lives. What kind of music moves you and why?