Posts Tagged ‘Music’

Being able to sing along: Semantic priming and familiar songs

April 29th, 2013 3 comments

Sing3Have you ever heard the saying, “If I could remember school work like I remember lyrics, I’d be a genius?” It is true that many people remember an immense number of songs throughout their lifespan. Melodies for popular songs are almost unforgettable, and learned lyrics can stay in memory for a lifetime (Bartlett and Snelus, 1980). Memory for songs is contained in two stores that have two separate functions: episodic and semantic memory. Episodic memory allows you to remember the “when,” and “where,” of things, so recalling the first time you ever heard “Hey Jude” by the Beatles would use episodic memory. Semantic memory refers to remembering the facts and vital information about something – the “what” – but not being able to specifically recall when you learned that information. Remembering the lyrics and tune to “Hey Jude,” uses semantic memory. It is not necessary for you to remember the first (or last) time you heard the song in order for you to be able to sing along.

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Categories: Memory Tags: ,

Music and Test Taking: When to Hit Pause

April 28th, 2013 8 comments

Do you ever listen to music while doing your homework? I know I do! In my opinion my iTunes library helps me stay on task and finish my work in a more timely manner. If you feel the same way I do, you should know that studies have shown that the effects of background music varying depending on the type of work you are doing; in some cases music can help you while in other situations you’re better off putting the headphones down.


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Categories: Education Tags: , ,

“We All Have a Song That’s Somehow Stamped Our Lives”: Kenny Chesney Preaches the Truth

April 27th, 2013 5 comments


Anyone who listens to country music will undoubtedly know and love Kenny Chesney’s song “I Go Back,” in which he sings about certain songs that remind him of different memories throughout his life. He croons about how “Jack and Diane” brings back vivid memories of his adolescence such as football and his first love, and how “Keep on Rockin Me Baby,” reminds him of trying to impress girls at bars in college. When listening to this song, you can’t help but think of your own songs that have “somehow stamped your life.” Maybe every time you hear that NSYNC song, you’re brought back to awkward middle school dances. Maybe “Don’t Want to Miss a Thing,” makes you smile at memories of your first boyfriend. Maybe, like Chesney, a country song brings you back to your summer high school days. In fact, for me, “I Go Back” itself brings back vivid memories of driving through back roads in a Jeep with my friends. One thing is for certain: songs have a significant power to bring back life memories. This leads us to wonder: What types of memories exactly do they bring back?

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Categories: Memory Tags: