home
RSS
What makes a song popular? The brain may know
June 10th, 2011
05:25 PM ET

What makes a song popular? The brain may know

Do you know a future hit when you hear one?

New research from Emory University suggests that particular patterns of brain activity may be able to predict the popularity of music. More importantly, says lead researcher Gregory Berns, brain research might help forecast how culturally influential ideas can become. The study will be published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.

Berns and colleagues discovered the phenomenon accidentally. They had set out to look at the effects of popular opinion on adolescent preferences, using 120 songs by unsigned artists on MySpace that the participants probably hadn't heard of before. They conducted the experiment in 2006 with 27 participants aged 12 to 17, and used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to record brain responses to each of the songs.

Most of these songs didn't ever sell well. But in a few cases, they realized in the intervening years, several of the songs had gone on to become more widely popular, such as “Apologize” by One Republic.

Comparing brain response data with sales of those songs from 2007 to 2010, they found a correlation between particular brain responses and songs that would go on to sell more than 20,000 units. About 1/3 of the songs that sold more than this drew strong activity from two brain regions associated with reward. Weak responses were even better at predicting flops; lower activity was associated with about 90% of songs selling less than 20,000 units.

Strong activity in two brain regions could predict hits about 1/3 of the time. Weak activity was even better at predicting non-hits.

There are caveats, of course. The sample size of 27 is relatively small, and may not be representative of the general population, although teenagers do tend to buy a lot of music, Berns said.

The two brain regions researchers identified as important in this study, called the orbitofrontal cortex and ventral striatum, have been shown previously to be activated in situations where a person is anticipating something that he or she likes. That could be money, music, wine, and other items that people purchase.

"There's the sense that this circuit is somehow representing common utility or value to the person," Berns said.

Interestingly, the brain responses in those regions were better predictors of song success than whether the participants said they liked or disliked any given song. Berns speculates that's because when someone asks you what you think of a song, you might tailor your answer to what you believe the questioner wants to hear. The brain response may be the raw feeling you have about it.

While previous research looked at individual preferences, this study suggests that brain scans can predict widespread preferences of others. And actually, there are plenty of "neuromarketing" companies out there trying to exploit that idea, although these researchers are not affiliated with them.

Berns and colleagues are also studying how religious and political ideology are represented in the brain.

"There’s no reason why we couldn’t apply the same type of techniques to understand how people process concepts and ideas, and try to forecast whether those will will have staying power," he said.


soundoff (529 Responses)
  1. Julian Dominick

    https://ditu.google.cn/url?q=http://sergioa50v2.blogofchange.com/5452968/value-of-appointed-day-effective-date-in-restructuring

    June 11, 2021 at 02:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Edelmira Daste

    Your style is really unique compared to other folks I have read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I'll just bookmark this site.

    http://remingtonn29a7.alltdesign.com/repair-shop-secrets-20920106

    June 11, 2021 at 04:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. rv repair near me now

    You made some good points there. I checked on the internet to find out more about the issue and found most people will go along with your views on this web site.

    http://promo.pertinger.com/?URL=http://www.louis0m4i2.tusblogos.com/3494998/the-smart-trick-of-rv-repairs-near-me-that-nobody-is-discussing/

    June 11, 2021 at 08:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Ressie Burkhead

    https://daltonr03v1.shoutmyblog.com/4035473/little-known-facts-about-municipal-repair-shop

    June 11, 2021 at 11:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Hae Guevana

    I used to be able to find good information from your articles.

    June 11, 2021 at 11:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Wiley Olalde

    When I originally left a comment I seem to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now whenever a comment is added I recieve 4 emails with the exact same comment. There has to be a means you are able to remove me from that service? Thanks!

    https://www.bing.com/news/apiclick.aspx?ref=FexRss&aid=&url=https://devinm81r9.blogaritma.com/4401501/value-of-appointed-day-effective-date-in-restructuring

    June 11, 2021 at 12:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. nearby rv repair

    Hey there! I simply wish to give you a big thumbs up for your great information you have here on this post. I am coming back to your site for more soon.

    https://sweetcotton.com/osanpo/search/rank.cgi?mode=link&id=1154&url=https://ocrvmotorsports.biz

    June 11, 2021 at 17:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. prices near me

    Hi, I do believe this is an excellent site. I stumbledupon it 😉 I may come back once again since i have saved as a favorite it. Money and freedom is the greatest way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide others.

    gas

    June 11, 2021 at 18:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. RV Beds Near Me

    http://xjg.swclosing.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.org/

    June 11, 2021 at 23:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Rv Paint

    http://aristeas.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=fleetvehiclerepairshop.com

    June 11, 2021 at 23:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Sprinter Van Mechanic

    http://www.johnmckee.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=fleetrepairshops.com

    June 11, 2021 at 23:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. vaoroi

    Kênh Thẳng đá Bóng Hôm NaybongdatvTrên băng ghế huấn luyện, Lebanon đã xẻ nhiệm Ramiro Lopez cơ hội đây 3 tuần. Nhà cầm cố quân người Tây Ban Nha chủ yếu ớt thực hiện việc tại Ý và từng có thời gian thực hiện việc tại Kuwait.|Và NHM bóng đá Việt Nam đang hóng Minh Trí cùng đồng đội hóa giải đối thủ để tạo lợi thế đến trận lượt về tại đây hai ngày. Chelsea đã nên trải qua 8 phút bù giờ không thở được đảm bảo chiến thắng.

    https://murraystivoli.com/detail/bognda-99070.html

    June 12, 2021 at 00:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Mercedes Benz Sprinter Body Repair San Diego

    Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on blogs I stumbleupon everyday. It will always be exciting to read content from other authors and practice something from their sites.

    https://www.fahrradreisen-wanderreisen.de/redirect/?url=https://campervanrepairshop.com

    June 12, 2021 at 01:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. rv mattress near me

    http://www.liquidcomic.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrv.us

    June 12, 2021 at 01:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. paint job shops near me

    http://generalathletic.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrv.mobi/

    June 12, 2021 at 09:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. RV Slide Out Orange County

    I really love your website.. Great colors & theme. Did you build this site yourself? Please reply back as Iím trying to create my own blog and would like to find out where you got this from or just what the theme is called. Appreciate it!

    http://www.smacomber.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.ocrv.store/

    June 12, 2021 at 10:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Rv Maintenance Shop

    http://www.sun911.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=fleetservicesocrv.com/

    June 12, 2021 at 10:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Popup Camper Repair

    https://www.d-style.biz/feed2js/feed2js.php?src=http://campervanrepairshop.com/

    June 12, 2021 at 11:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Sprinter Return Line Repair

    http://www.seesaratoga.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvfleetservices.com/

    June 12, 2021 at 11:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. ltdbd

    Thẳng đá Bóng Ngày Hôm Nay, Liên Kết Xem Soccer Trực Tuyến 24hhtv2 hdTheo thể thức thi đấu, đội thắng ở cặp đấu này sẽ giành tấm vé đến Lithuania vào ngày hội bóng đá lớn nhất thế giới mang đến futsal. Tuyển futsal Việt Nam bước vào trận play-off lượt đi tranh vé dự play-off World Cup 2021 với sự tự tin. Tuy vậy, HLV Phạm Minh Giang bày tỏ, toàn đội ko ngán Lebanon tuy vậy sẽ tìm cách để khắc chế sức mạnh của đối thủ bởi trên băng ghế huấn luyện là nhà cầm quân Ramiro Lopez, người từng dẫn dắt futsal Tây Ban Nha.|Dựa vào lịch thi đấu, quý khách có thể chuẩn bị xếp việc làm

    https://virandoamor.com/detail/xem-truc-tiep-tren-k-39315.html

    June 12, 2021 at 15:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. massage near me

    Hello there! This post could not be written much better! Going through this article reminds me of my previous roommate! He always kept preaching about this. I'll forward this article to him. Pretty sure he will have a great read. Many thanks for sharing!

    http://www.paulzip.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=hootnholler.net

    June 12, 2021 at 19:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. escape rooms near me

    An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a co-worker who had been conducting a little homework on this. And he in fact bought me lunch because I found it for him... lol. So allow me to reword this.... Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending the time to discuss this subject here on your internet site.

    http://small-foundation.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=bjsnearme.com/

    June 12, 2021 at 21:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. popeyes chicken near me

    http://flamingzealots.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.bestlocalnearme.com/

    June 12, 2021 at 21:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. mcdonalds near me

    You've made some really good points there. I checked on the internet to find out more about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this website.

    https://www.chaosns.com/link.php?url=https://www.bestlocalnearme.com

    June 12, 2021 at 22:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. academy sports near me

    Everyone loves it when people get together and share opinions. Great website, keep it up!

    http://www.zhhsw.com/home/link.php?url=https://bestlocalnearme.com/

    June 12, 2021 at 23:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. verizon store near me

    https://www.sportreisen-duo.de/iframe_extern.php?url=http://www.reviewnearme.com

    June 13, 2021 at 04:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. houses for rent near me

    http://sc.hkexnews.hk/TuniS/quotenearme.com/

    June 13, 2021 at 06:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. tobacco shop near me

    Howdy! I could have sworn Iíve visited this website before but after browsing through some of the articles I realized itís new to me. Anyhow, Iím definitely happy I found it and Iíll be book-marking it and checking back often!

    http://www.realtimeracks.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=reviewnearme.com/

    June 13, 2021 at 06:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. pools near me

    http://fbetpay.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.bulknearme.com

    June 13, 2021 at 07:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. sallys near me

    Spot on with this write-up, I really feel this site needs a great deal more attention. Iíll probably be returning to read more, thanks for the information!

    https://neurostar.com/en/redirect.php?url=https://www.bestservicenearme.com/

    June 13, 2021 at 09:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. contractors near me

    That is a really good tip especially to those fresh to the blogosphere. Brief but very accurate informationÖ Appreciate your sharing this one. A must read article!

    http://www.acuityfin.net/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=reviewnearme.com/

    June 13, 2021 at 13:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. bass pro shop near me

    http://sendfwd.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=hootnholler.net/

    June 13, 2021 at 15:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. aldi near me

    http://d-flute.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.bulknearme.com/

    June 13, 2021 at 17:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. bbq near me

    I couldnít resist commenting. Perfectly written!

    https://bonus-books.com/campervanrepairshop-com/

    June 13, 2021 at 18:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. wings near me

    https://www.bukkit.org/proxy.php?link=https://www.contractorinorangecounty.com/

    June 14, 2021 at 03:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. restaurant near me

    http://friscowebsites.com/Redirect.aspx?destination=http://www.ashleysmaldino.com/

    June 14, 2021 at 04:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. junkyard near me

    https://www.greatmindsinstem.org/Redirect.aspx?destination=www.howtobrews.com

    June 14, 2021 at 05:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. gastroenterologist near me

    After I initially commented I appear to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I recieve four emails with the same comment. Perhaps there is a means you are able to remove me from that service? Thanks!

    https://barrypopik.com/index.php?URL=http://www.local-business-video-marketing.com

    June 14, 2021 at 05:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. kfc near me

    Can I simply say what a relief to discover an individual who genuinely knows what they are talking about on the web. You actually know how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More people ought to check this out and understand this side of the story. I can't believe you aren't more popular since you definitely possess the gift.

    http://www.shinobi.jp/etc/goto.html?wifimind.com/

    June 14, 2021 at 08:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. lawn mower repair near me

    Howdy, I do think your site might be having browser compatibility problems. When I take a look at your site in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in IE, it's got some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Aside from that, great website!

    https://texasonline.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=www.veteranautoglass.com/

    June 14, 2021 at 09:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. fabric stores near me

    Oh my goodness! Impressive article dude! Thank you so much, However I am going through problems with your RSS. I donít understand the reason why I can't join it. Is there anybody having similar RSS problems? Anyone that knows the solution can you kindly respond? Thanks!!

    https://eportal.uspaacc.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=http://www.boxtruckrepairshop.com/

    June 14, 2021 at 11:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. neurologist near me

    https://www.pichak.net/verification/index.php?n=39&url=https://www.lesbianassworship.net/

    June 14, 2021 at 12:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. veterinary near me

    Very good article! We are linking to this great article on our site. Keep up the great writing.

    http://ci.pittsburg.ca.us/redirect.aspx?url=ocrvcenter.biz

    June 14, 2021 at 14:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. state farm near me

    https://brettterpstra.com/share/fymdproxy.php?url=http://allbrewsupplies.com

    June 14, 2021 at 16:53 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Leave a Reply to Laure


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.