If Music Gives You Goosebumps, Your Brain Might Have A Special Ability

27 November 2017, 15:36

Picture: Getty Creative
Woodrow Whyte

By Woodrow Whyte

If you say so, science.

When was the last time you got goosebumps from listening to a song? We can’t even remember the last time it happened to us, probably because we’re dead on the inside, but we’re not here to talk about our issues with emotions and feelings so let’s get on with some news, shall we?

A scientist has looked into why some people get goosebumps when listening to music to see how this feeling is triggered and it turns out that those people have a special ability to connect with music.


Matthew Sachs, a former undergraduate at Harvard, took brain scans of 20 students, 10 of whom experienced goosebumps and 10 that didn’t. He then compared them to see if there was any differences between them.

According to the i100, he discovered that those that had managed to make the emotional and physical attachment to music actually have different brain structures than those that don’t.

Those that did experience goosebumps tended to have a denser volume of fibres that connect their auditory cortex (which is the part of the brain that processes sounds) and areas that process emotions, meaning the two can communicate better.

What the bloody hell does that mean? Well, if you often get goosebumps when you’re listening to music, it is likely that you have stronger and more intense emotions. That probably isn’t that surprising but the idea that there could be a scientific reason behind it is so interesting. Sachs is going to be conducting further research, hopefully with a bigger pool of people, to learn more about what is happening neurologically to cause these reactions which could actually tap into treatment for psychological disorders. Pretty cool, huh?


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