Researchers have discovered a significant link between musical synchronization and social connectedness. Analyzing the behavior of university students engaged in impromptu music-making, the study found that individuals who synchronized their musical rhythms felt a stronger sense of connection with their peers, highlighting music’s unique role in fostering social cohesion. The findings have been published in Psychology of Music.
Previous studies have indicated that music can establish and maintain social bonds, but the mechanics of how this happens were still shrouded in mystery. This study aimed to uncover the link between the physical act of making music together – specifically, synchronizing rhythms – and the feeling of being connected to others.
“I am interested in how being ‘in sync’ with other people through the experience of music-making and other forms of artistic expression supports a general feeling of connectedness to others, which in turn may support people’s well-being,” said study author Warren Mansell, a professor of mental health at Curtin University and director of the LEx Mental Health Research Group.
“There is good evidence that synchrony is involved in a range of everyday activities, yet the research in this area had either set a tempo for people to play to, or allowed people to communicate when performing which means they could have told each other to play in sync rather than the synchrony emerging purely through the interface of music.” [Continue reading…]