How Music Influences Adolescence

Music is a highly influential factor thanks to the diversity of musical styles. Today, we'll talk about how music influences adolescence.
How Music Influences Adolescence

Last update: 26 March, 2022

A fundamental element in cultural training and one that influences emotions and customs is music. On that note, music influences adolescence in an especially powerful way, especially when it comes to their behavior. Thanks to the diversity of musical styles, the identity of each adolescent is built.

Other identity-building factors such as hairstyles, language, and costumes are added to music.

However, it’s important to observe that music today contains more and more sexual and violent messages, with teenagers listening to it the most. Generally, these young people are led to listen to these songs due to pressure or recommendations from their friends. At this age, the opinions of friends are usually taken into account more than those of family members.

What is music?

Music is a resource that has great persuasive power and is ideal for influencing the behavioral development of the individual. This occurs thanks to its ability to easily impact human emotions, moods, and behaviors.

How music influences adolescence

In the process of creating and consolidating personal identity, adolescents join groups with similar affinities. Friendships emerge from these group unions, which are key pieces in the formation of behavioral patterns characteristic of each social tribe. It’s very common for adolescents to substitute family dependence with group dependence.

Teenagers playing in a band.

The stage of adolescence is characterized by identity and confusion; it occupies the fifth stage of the identity formation process. It should be noted that adolescence is the key moment in which the individual seeks their place within society. Many fall into social groups with toxic attitudes that affect their family relationship and performance in society.

In social tribes, beliefs are set that members must follow and act accordingly. Music represents, in many cases, the belief of social groups, determining the way they move, speak, and dress.

Thanks to these beliefs, a more solid feeling of belonging to the group is built. This population leads the purchase of musical records and visits to audiovisual channels on the Internet. Through some established trends, it’s easy to direct the action of many social groups and motivate them to adhere to certain styles.

The negative effects of how music influences adolescence

Adolescents are the most likely to suffer the consequences of the effects of music:

  • Sentimental and affective weakness
  • Fixing the idea that the sufferer is always the one who’s affected
  • Suicidal ideations
  • Rebellion caused by the content of the lyrics

There are some musical genres more associated than others with the idea that they have a negative impact on the behavior of adolescents. It’s worth highlighting, for example, that electronic music is linked to greater consumption of drugs such as cocaine, marijuana, and ecstasy. This is outlined in the article “The importance of music in young people and its therapeutic benefits.”

Similarly, reggaetón, a very popular rhythm among young people, is related to the impoverishment of the language of adolescents, to the detriment of the values that dignify the current role of women in society. Although not all the musical groups that represent this genre repeat this pattern, it’s a general trend.

The positive effects of music in adolescence

Music influences adolescence in a positive way aS well, for example:

  • Classical music and the worship or gospel genres convey a message with values and positivity. This musical style is therapeutic and relaxing in tense situations.
  • Some music genres or songs help teens feel more uninhibited. Sometimes, it’s a way to disguise shyness and be accepted in society.
  • Teenagers’ taste for music gives them an adequate space to freely carry out their activities. Listening to classical music to study stimulates the brain, thus favoring the learning process. At the same time, it offers them healthy spaces for distraction.
A teenage boy playing an electric guitar.

In the process of acquiring independence, music influences adolescence, representing for teens an escape route from their problems. The diversity of musical styles and lifestyles make the adolescent take negative on behaviors as rebellion against authority. However, it can also help them adopt positive attitudes such as improving their self-esteem.

Many teenagers are introduced to music and the passion becomes such that they choose it as a career. Music facilitates the propagation of the cultures of a country and the different traditional musical manifestations of each region. In the same way, it contributes to the national identity of each young person.

In teenage conversations, music is usually one of the central themes, so that it becomes a way of socialization. Interaction with other adolescents with similar musical affinities helps many young people to have better social behavior. In other cases, they run the risk of becoming aggressive or addicted to drugs by following certain lifestyle subcultures.

It might interest you...
The Relationship Between Emotional Bonds and Musical Objects
You are Mom
Read it in You are Mom
The Relationship Between Emotional Bonds and Musical Objects

Have you ever thought there could be a relationship between emotional bonds and musical objects? We'll tell you all about it.



  • BAUMANN, V. H. (1960). “Teen-age music preferences”, Journal of Research in Music Education, 8, pp. 75-84.
  • CÓRDOBA, Á. P., Tena, M. J. F., Hernández, Y. S., Marcos, J. M. O., & Ruíz, Y. D. (2020) La importancia de la música en los jóvenes y sus beneficios terapeúticos. CONDUCTAS DE RIESGO, 15.
  • HORMIGOS, J. (2004). “La construcción de la identidad juvenil a través de la música”, Revista Española de Sociología, 4, pp. 259-270.
  • MEGÍAS, I. y RODRÍGUEZ, E. (2002). Jóvenes entre sonidos: hábitos, gustos y referentes musicales. Madrid, Injuve.
  • RICE, F. P. (2000). Adolescencia. Desarrollo, relaciones y cultura. Madrid, Pretince-Hall.
  • RODRÍGUEZ, Á. R. (2015). El papel de la música en la construcción de una identidad durante la adolescencia:¿ Dime qué escuchas y te diré quién eres?. Síneris: revista de musicología, (22), 1. https://dialnet.unirioja.es/descarga/articulo/6357469.pdf