Listening to Music Improves Our Memory and Performance

If there is anything I have learned about studying at the university, it is that listening to music while studying for an exam has considerably improved my scores. While I have always been a good student, I have had issues with remembering a great deal of information for an exam – especially when cramming during finals week! Some students say that if they make a habit of chewing gum while they study and then chew gum during an exam, they score higher. I on the other hand am unable to chew gum, so what is my solution? You guessed it -listening to a specific genre of music while studying.

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For me, listening to indie and alternative helps me focus and retain information over all other genres. Aside from using music to study, listening to music in general can improve your memory power by getting you into the “zone.” It is comforting and allows you to focus on what you are doing at hand without distractions.

 

Music also allows you to concentrate more efficiently, and listening to music that you enjoy in the workplace can improve your mood and performance. Whether you work outdoors, in an office, or as an Olympic athlete, listening to music is calming and reduces anxiety levels. Some Olympic athletes are using music to help them sleep and improve brain function. This also improves short-term memory.

If music can improve your memory, sleep, confidence, endurance, and also reduce tension, it is difficult to find any reason to not take advantage of the music that surrounds us. As a student, I am always looking for techniques to improve my educational performance. It is inexpensive to purchase music, and it is effortless to enjoy it.

Whether you are a student or a businessman, I challenge you to listen to music during your study sessions or working hours. Comment below and let me know if it helps improve your memory, focus, and performance!

-Lindsey

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Kesha’s Encouraging Fanbase

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As many of us have been aware over recent years, Kesha has been in a sexual assault lawsuit against her former producer Dr. Luke. While the lawsuit was active, Kesha was unable to perform or record new music. It has been an emotional rollercoaster for Kesha and her fans who have supported her in her claims since day one. The on-going lawsuit was a huge deal, not only because Kesha was unable to record and perform, but because the record label did not want to let her go. It was a long battle, but Kesha made the decision to drop the charges with the sole purpose of moving forward with her career.

Kesha’s first concert after dropping the charges took place in Atlantic City, New Jersey and she played to a sold out crowd. She was still unable to perform music that was recorded under the record label, but she made the best out of the situation with old material and cover songs. It was an emotional time and she continued to thank her fans throughout the entire concert. While I have not followed Kesha closely in recent years, mainly because she has mostly been out of the public eye while dealing with the lawsuit, I think it is incredible the way her fans have stuck by her side.

This goes to show how strong the music community is and how much support the community has for its artists. It would have been all too easy for fans to look the another way and allow Kesha to fight the battle on her own; to move along to the next artist active in the music scene. This, however, is not how the music community operates. They stick together through thick and thick, tough times and the good. Kesha’s fans followed the lawsuit every step of the way and continued to encourage her to stay strong. They waited for her to have her freedom back, and they were there are her first concert to make it as special as they could.

Nothing can break the music bonds that artists and fans share. There are no weaknesses when they all come together, and they are never alone. Have you followed Kesha throughout the lawsuit? What are your thoughts on her fan support system, and sticking with an inactive artist during hard times? Please, comment below!

-Lindsey

Silversun Pickups: A Unique Melody

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If you have not listened to Silversun Pickups in the past, I urge you to listen to them now. Their newest album titled Better Nature was released in 2015, but I recently began hearing it on the radio and feel that I will be forever hooked on the smooth sounds and catchy lyrics. It is unclear as to how I have missed out on their music over the years; but now that they have gained my attention, I purchased concert tickets to see them live later this month. For this reason, I thought I should dig into the band’s history and sound to get a better idea of who they are.

Silversun Pickups is an alternative rock band formed in 2000 out of the Los Angeles area. It is composed of Brian Aubert, Nikki Monninger, Christopher Guanlao and Joe Lester, all who play a variety of instruments. With their newest album, the band was determined to get out of their comfort zones and try something new – and it worked wonders. The band even used a vibraphone on one of their songs titled Tape Deck. The band appears to be all about experimentation and furthering their skills and sound as a band. The band is so interested in trying new things and doing it their own way, that they even decided to create their own record label.

What I find interesting about Silversun Pickups is that bassist Nikki Monninger is actually a mother to twins. I love that she is able to continue her career as a musician while also being an active mother in her children’s lives. You hear all too often of women having to give up their dreams after becoming mother, and so the fact that she is continuing her dreams is enlightening. Furthermore, I have not seen any negative comments about this online which is also rare as people are often judgmental of things like this. It is quite inspiring, especially to me as I am hoping to have children of my own in the near future.

You can check out their video below. Leave a comment and let me know what you think of their rare sound!

-Lindsey

Warpaint’s New and Experimental Sound

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Warpaint is a fairly new band to me, but they actually began releasing music back in 2004 out of Los Angeles, California. I have never heard them on the radio, seen them on the television, or noticed their name on any concert lineups. Their music is more indie influenced than anything, and while I enjoy indie, I do not often seek new artists within the genre. So how did I discover them? As it turns out, one of the artists in the band is actually the daughter of the general manager at my place of employment.

 

While I have been with the company for over four years, it was not until recently that I thought I would give Warpaint a listen. Sure, the general manager has spoken of the band on numerous occasions considering his pride in his daughter’s career accomplishments, but I never sat down to truly listen to them and to see what they are all about. Recently, however, the band came out with a new song, and it was all I could hear at work. You see, the general manager’s office is behind the wall of the office where I reside; and he is playing the song constantly for our fellow employees and even customers.

Taken from the band’s upcoming new album titled Heads Up, the untitled track is quite catchy. It is a dancing tune which is apparently much different than their past music. It is 80’s inspired and  funky which is really beginning to turn heads. It is a fun approach to music and you can tell that the band experimented with this single.

What I think is truly neat about Warpaint is that it is an all female band. It consists of four band members; Emily Kokal, Theresa Wayman, Jenny Lee Lindberg, and Stella Mozgawa. The four have continued to experiment with different sounds from electronic, to punk, to hip-hop and dance, and more; never settling. As what comes with an ever-changing sounds, Warpaint has also began to play music festivals such as Coachella and Bonnaroo.

Warpaint’s music appears to keep fans at the edge of their seats, always unsure and surprised of what the band releases next. Heads Up is expected to be released on September 23, 2016 and can be pre-ordered here. Not sure if their sound is for you? I urge you to check out their new song on YouTube. You are in for a treat! Check them out and enjoy the rare sounds of an all female band.

-Lindsey

Musician’s Stolen Equipment

More recently than ever, I am noticing an awful trend among touring bands – stolen equipment. Thieves are literally stealing an artist’s music equipment right out of their vans and trailers without remorse. As many artists have made music and traveling a career, the stolen equipment is necessary to provide income for their families. It provides a home, food, and every day living necessities. It is disturbing that there are people who are so willing to disrupt one’s day-to-day life.

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Los Igualados (Photo credit)

While there have been many cases about such theft in the news, one of the most recent stories I have heard about come from a band called Los Igualados. Upon checking into their hotel room in Houston, Texas, a white truck pulled up to their trailer and took it. The trailer had over $60,000 worth of band equipment inside including speakers, microphones, and instruments; everything they require to perform.

The reason I think it is important to post about this topic is not to show how often theft occurs, but because I think it is incredible how the music community responds to the news. I say “community” rather than “fans” because even those who are unaware of who the band in the news is, they support them nonetheless. Whether it be by sharing the news story, keeping a lookout for equipment up for sale, watching for the suspects, or supporting the band financially, the music community comes together to ensure the band gets back on their feet.

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76 Juliet (Photo credit)

A popular response to equipment theft is to set-up a Go Fund Me account. This is what shows the major support the music community has for each other. This, between other fundraisers, helps the musicians the most if their equipment is otherwise not recovered. Another band by the name of 76 Juliet has also recently had their equipment stolen from their trailer at an estimated loss of $14,000. Locals have scheduled a benefit show to help 76 Juliet with the costs of buying new equipment to continue their dream. As a local band, they cannot afford all new equipment at this point without the help of others.

It is important to support bands going through such tough times as they rely on their equipment to continue their musical dreams and to make a living. It is amazing to see the support bands get from both fans and strangers alike. The music community is so strong, and I love that everyone is able to come together to better situations. Please pay attention to the news for when this happens. Whether or not you can afford to make a donation, I ask that you at least share the story. Help artists keep their dreams alive.

-Lindsey

Vans Warped Tour Diversity

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Vans Warped Tour has been apart of the music festival community for over twenty years. It is festival that has spread worldwide, but it began in the United States. Warped Tour is interesting in comparison to other music festivals because it chooses the artists based on a wide variety of music genres, ages, location, and even fan picks. The festival has been so successful over the years because it does not cater to one specific audience – each passing year, the festival caters to popular music at that time and what both new and old Warped Tour goers hope to see. They even survey fans every year to achieve such goals.

2016’s Warped Tour is one of the most diverse yet. It includes rock, pop rock, heavy metal, rap, indie, R&B, and more. The diversity continues to bring over 500,000 fans to the festival each year. With a variety of music comes a variety of fans, creating a widespread community of people. The music brings thousands of fans together where everyone is no doubt family for the day. Through crowd sing-alongs, dancing and mosh pits, crowd surfing and more, everyone respects and looks out for everyone.

Warped Tour is an all ages event, and the festival even caters to parents who otherwise may be dissatisfied with either the music, heat, or crowd, being that it is not really their scene. For this, many parents can attend the event for free and sit inside the air conditioned parent’s tent where they can take a break from the festival without imposing on their children. All in all, the event is safe; the only condition that can be dangerous to everyone is the heat, and so it is important to stay hydrated. The festival offers free water stations for this reason.

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Kevin Lyman, who is the founder of Vans Warped Tour, believes that for as long as the festival caters to diversity, it will continue to grow and be successful. Much of its success has to do with the fact that it is not financially driven. Lyman created the festival for the sole purpose of music enjoyment and bringing people together. While the festival began as a mostly punk rock event, it has evolved into what it is today through the fans and their hopes and desires. Both new and old bands are added to lineup each year, continuing to bring newcomers to the festival.

Warped Tour is full of life, and aside from the performances, it also seeks to educate the audience of on-going issues in the world, whether it be poverty, equality, or the environment. The festival will continue to be everything it is today for as long as we the fans support the cause. There are only a few dates left of the 2016 festival, and so if you have not attended yet, I urge you to follow Vans Warped Tour on any social media platform so that you may not only follow its progress, but to be aware of when the event will be near you. Attending this festival at least once in your lifetime is a must!

Why should genres say who we are?

I have always found it interesting how people can believe they know who you are based off of the music genre you listen to, or how they believe they know what genre you listen to based solely off your personality. Why would it make sense to assume someone only listens to one genre? Why do we have to fit into certain stereotypes?

I, for one, have a gentle voice and a quiet and sweet personality – so I have been told. With this in mind, many are shocked to find that my taste in music is very opposite of who I am viewed to be. While I listen to many genres, my favorites include rock, metal, indie, punk, and hardcore. Such genres may be deceptive to those whom have not given them a chance. It may appear as violent to some with its heavy riffs and screaming or deep vocals. Even an artist’s or fans appearance may seem off to those unaccepting or unaware.

If fans of my personally favorited genres are typically viewed as having low self-esteem, not hard working, not gentle, and not outgoing; why then would this outlook not be reflected upon me? Well, perhaps because I am an educated young woman with a gentle appearance. Many do not believe that I play into that scene, mainly because they have taken an opportunity to get to know me before learning of my musical interests.

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As with anything, people maintain certain viewpoints up until they are able to experience something first hand. When it comes to music, however, if it is not one’s preferred genre, one will not give it a chance. A scientific study suggests that people like music based on what they have been culturally exposed to. While I know many who can appreciate all art in music, I find that many older people are truly against it. They are open only to what they grew up with.

So I ask – what stereotype do people associate with you? Or, perhaps you keep your interests to yourself in fear that they will not be accepted; and so I challenge you to be unexpected. Show a colleague something about yourself that one would not otherwise guess about you. Educate acceptance.