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wundayatta's avatar

Where and how do you listen to music?

Asked by wundayatta (58329 points ) August 13th, 2011

Do you have it on in the background? Do you focus on it? Is it serious for you or is it noise? Do you do it at home? At work? On the road? In the concert hall? Only one of these places?

Most often, the music I listen to is my own. It’s live and it’ll never be heard again. But lately a friend has been sending me music to listen to, and I’ve started listening to recorded music on my phone. Mostly I listen to it while out of the house—in the car; on my bike; shopping. But sometimes I’ll listen at home—sitting on the toilet, reading, or (rarely) fluthering. Would fluthering while listening to music be muthering or luthering? Listering? Mustering?

The other times I’ll listen is when the radio is playing music and, very rarely, when listening to a CD or MP3 on the playback system in one of the rooms of our house.

Mostly I see music as background. It kind of affects my mind on a subconscious level, but I don’t like it to break into my conscious mind. For that reason, songs often really annoy me. Songs have words and I have to focus conscious attention on them in order to understand the words. I tend to resent that because for me, music does not belong in that part of my brain.

How much of a role does music play in your life? Where and how do you play it? How do you listen?

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20 Answers

chyna's avatar

I listen to the radio at work as background noise, very low where no one else can hear it. At the gym I use my IPod for motivational music and because they usually have ESPN blaring on the TV.
I listen to the radio in the car to get news of wrecks that will impede my drive to and from work. I don’t listen to music at home. I usually have the TV on most of the day.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I grew up with music being played daily.My parents and siblings all played instruments and many of my nieces and nephews play I am the only one who doesn’t…unless you like a bad harmonica…I usually listen to my MP3 in my car,I have music on when I paint or throw pottery,I rarely watch tv or movies,so music is usually on in the background.I will sometimes bring my headphones on a bike ride.Nothing like this while pedaling down the path.:)
Tonight,I am going to a blues festival.That should be nice! I love music— :))

pezz's avatar

I mainly use my ears to listern to music… if it’s loud enough, sometimes i can feel it…

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

I rarely listen to music any more. If not enjoying complete silence, then usually talk radio or a philosophy/science podcast is filling my airspace. A certain fluther member graced me with a fabulous playlist and I found it quite wonderful. One of my best friends used to make cd’s for me, but he moved away.

Good music really consumes me. So I find it difficult to work with it playing in the background.

JLeslie's avatar

Very interesting question. This rrally made me think, which probably seems odd. Generally music is not background for me. I care what music I am listening too, the majority of the time it is my own music not a radio station. I put on music when I clean, but generally not otherwise in my house, with the exception of when I am on the treadmill, but I actually would prefer to watch tv if I easily could. And, every once in a while when my husband feels like purchasing some music, we wind up listening to a bunch of old and new.

I do listen in the car. Also, I almost always focus in on the background music while shopping. You can find me mouthing a few words or moving a little to the beat in the supermarket. I love when stores have great music on while I look around.

Blondesjon's avatar

Anywhere and everywhere that I can. I function better when my life has a soundtrack. I think I could put down the bottle before I ever put away the music.

As far a listening methods go, well, I either plug my laptop in to my stereo or tv and blare away or, if etiquette dictates, I grab the iPod and the headphones.

El_Cadejo's avatar

If i’m awake there is a very high chance im listening to music. Sometimes its nothing more than background noise but when Im driving the music allows me to think much better. Some music lifts my spirits and makes me happy or energetic while other music will consume my whole being and take my mind away on a magical journey. Good music can speak to the soul like nothing else can imo, it can move you and make you experience feelings you didnt think possible otherwise Music is by far one of the most important things to me in my life.

My name is Uberbatman and I am an audiophile

Blackberry's avatar

Usually in my car or when I’m running.

Mamradpivo's avatar

Sitting in my apartment, sipping a beer and considering what I should do this evening.

flutherother's avatar

I love music but it is mostly background with me. I listen to music while reading, or playing games and rarely listen to it on its own. I have a Walkman but I don’t listen to music when out and about. If I am doing any work about the house I like to have some music to listen to. There are pieces of music I can listen to over and over again but it is also nice to be surprised by a new piece of music. When I come across new music that I really like I listen to it over and over again.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

Where: In my room
How: Usually blast it out from the computer speakers. No complaints from other neighbors so far. I’m sure they’re either deaf or they’re not in their houses when I blast my music.

I don’t like to listen to music outside the house. Background noises usually interfere with the music and I don’t like competing with them.

Hibernate's avatar

HOme and when I travel and I don’t have company.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Usually at home, using last.fm or CD’s. We often put on music to go to sleep with and I put it on when cleaning house.

Cruiser's avatar

I have speakers all throughout my house that provides soothing back ground music in almost every room. But in the basement is a high fidelity sound system with 50 year old Voice of the Theater speakers that will blow you away that is used for spinning old vinyl rock records…Sweaty Teddy Nugent being at the front of the stack of albums!

XD's avatar

I spend lots of time not listening to music, however, I have also had a lot of focused time selecting recorded music to accompany live theater. From that, I’ve really had to develop an ear for music fitting a mood or a message both in terms of style and content, and it has forced me to map out a lot of unchartered (for me) territory. As a result, I’ve felt a good deal of satisfaction in figuring out both what I really like and also what can make a song special. For example, songs that have both a unique and “true” take on a subject with lyrics that are either well-written or intentionally goofy enough to pass.

My favorite listening usually happens when I’m plugged into my iPod at dusk and I’ve settled in with some whiskey and a cigar or pipe.

I aspire to play more, but it’s never top of mind as a thing to do.

One other thing I wonder about is whether or how great an effect tuning frequencies have on our psyches. There are conspiracy-type theories around this, but it’s also true that tuning wasn’t standardized until the 1920s or so, both in terms of the pitch of individual notes and the spacing between notes. I haven’t had luck finding good information on this topic, but it’s something that I’d like to understand a little more fully someday.

Leanne1986's avatar

I always have music on in the car and sometimes when I am pottering around the house. 99% of the time it comes from my iPhone nowadays.

ddude1116's avatar

I usually listen to music alone, anymore, because I like to focus on the notes and the lyrics. More often than not, I’d be pacing and singing along, too.

Earthgirl's avatar

Lately my MP3 player died and I am going through music withdrawal! I need my music on a daily basis. I listen to it on the way to work and on the way home. I love having the headphones on and losing myself in the music. Sometimes I am surprised that a song hits me very strongly and I become emotional enough to cry when I hear it. Other songs cheer me up when I am down. The lyrics are extremely important to me. I love poetic lyrics. for example, the lyrics to Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen.
If a song was important to me at a certain time in my life it will always, always remind me of that time and the people I knew back when. Obviously, I am very sentimental!
When I play music at home it’s nice to play it as loud as I like. sometimes I dance around, but don’t tell anybody

Bellatrix's avatar

I mostly listen in my car. I also listen when at work and would do more but someone said people get really snarky if you listen to the radio all the time on your computer because of the bandwidth you use?? No idea but it has made me more cautious.

At home. Have heaps of music. Don’t listen as much as I should but will when relaxing, in the bath, having a glass of wine with my husband.

martianspringtime's avatar

I don’t have itunes on my computer anymore, but when I did it was always on in the background. Now I occasionally put a youtube playlist on or go on grooveshark, but the speakers on my computer have been giving me trouble so it’s not very often.
When I’m in my room or just getting ready to go out I put a record on, but I’m so lazy that the same record sits in the player until I get absolutely sick of it (weeks) because I don’t want to change it.
When I’m in a friend’s car and am asked to put on music, I just put it on shuffle because I don’t like the pressure of being the DJ of music I don’t even know.
Sometimes I just lie around and reacquaint myself with the music on my ipod.

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