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Don't mind me… just here to take over the world…

Human affinity for bass

Why do humans like bass in their music so much?

I have a hypothesis I stumbled on while listening to music pretty loudly with the bass turned up and noticing it scared my dog. Perhaps if we go back far enough, we find something akin to African drum circles. What purpose would these serve? To ward off potential predators. I can imagine a ground-shaking drum circle would tell a big cat (or even a group of them or other predator of humans), “Don’t look for food here. We’re much bigger than you and will destroy you.”

I further go to hypothesize that that resonating feeling of power felt when listening to loud music (esp. with bass), i.e. “getting amped up,” is a result of the success of the aforementioned drum circle technique. Removing the predatory element from our daily lives, we allow ourselves a feeling of safety and even dominance. The association of the music with safety and dominance has, over time, conditioned us to feel powerful with certain types of music.

These are hypotheses that I will now begin researching. I will update this blog post with findings as appropriate. Comments and research leads are welcome.