There are so many types of music in this world and everyone has their own individual taste in what they like to listen to. Developing a taste in music can be as easy as just hearing a single song, liking it, and expanding to similar songs and artists that give off the same sound or have catchy lyrics that stick in your head for hours. I find myself regularly singing songs in my head and having to go look them up later on to listen to them. This is what has helped me develop my taste in music and probably many others. One of the most popular music styles that blossomed in the last couple of decades has been hip-hop; and with this blossoming, society has noticed a trend with the individuals that take a great interest in this style of music. This style of music has a lot of lyrics that directly relate to drugs and alcohol and people feel this is influencing the population that listens to hip-hop. Not only is it the lyrics that seem to catch attention of listeners, but the artists that sing these songs tend to have drug and alcohol substances in their music videos, as well. This has caused people to believe that hip-hop music influences its daily listeners to use these substances.
“More than 1,200 California community-college students ages 15-25 took part in the study — titled “Music, Substance Use and Aggression” — and answered survey questions about their music-listening habits, use of alcohol and drugs” (Montgomery). The Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation conducted this study and, “The results found that almost 70 percent of the students who listened to music “daily or almost daily” listened to rap and hip-hop” (Montgomery). “If you listen to rap music, you’re more likely to use alcohol and drugs” (Montgomery). This study is showing dominant information that hip-hop is having an influence on its listeners and is causing them to use more dugs and drink more alcohol.
Although this study seems to have data that correlates directly between hip-hop and substance use, if we apply the IMT principles, we can see that there is no correlation. In IMT there is no influence so it is impossible for a style of music to influence its listeners to use substances such as drugs and alcohol. The listener would be born with the traits that would lead him to use these substances and the type of music he or she listens to would have absolutely no influence in their actions. The unique conditions that the listeners are born with would lead them directly to the unique final conditions of being a substance user and the music would have no affect whatsoever. So be free to listen to what you want, but never blame substance use on the music you or someone else listens to.
Montgomery, James. “Study Says Hip-Hop Listeners More Prone To Drug Use, Aggression.” MTV. N.p., 18 Apr. 2006. Web. 18 Mar. 2016. <http://www.mtv.com/news/1528932/study-says-hip-hop-listeners-more-prone-to-drug-use-aggression/>.