Did you know that experiencing and learning to enjoy different music and new genres makes you more open-minded, understanding, and a better problem-solver? Let’s plug those earphones in and go on an adventure!

We all have music we just can’t really stand. But, turns out, it’s healthy to play around with some new music and learn to appreciate the oddities of it. Studies show that the more you listen to music, the more you like it. Not too surprising, but when you think of actually enjoying that music you “just can’t stand”, it does seem something just short of a miracle..

Researchers also say that the more dissonance, which is difficulty listening, harshness, perceived roughness, or unpleasantness, we hear in the music the less we enjoy it. However, we can still warm up to these dissonant genres if we listen to them once in awhile.

If you just can’t understand those kids who listen to heavy metal or your neighbor who blasts that twangy country on Friday nights? Maybe a newfound appreciation of their music could shine some light on a new understanding of them. Let’s give it a shot!

There are some go-to genres when you are trying to learn to enjoy different music. Read on for some ideas!

Learn to Enjoy Different Music: Some genres to get you started!


Calm you down from your mind down to your body. Smooth jazz can be especially soothing. Our brainwaves slow to match the tempo of music. The downtempo in jazz can be an especially soothing tempo for our brainwaves to align with.

Jazz is also all about improvisation. Jazz musicians are taught how to improvise or “wing it” while performing live and still making it sound great! Listen to jazz if you’re looking to strengthen your originality or out-of-the-ordinary creation.


Strengthen your sense of self. Studies show that heavy metal rockers grow up to have a strong sense of self-identity, they live to have less regrets, and are great with building community.

Could you use a quick confidence boost before a big event? Or would you like to care a little less about what everyone is thinking all the time? Rocking to some heavy metal will surely do the trick!


Relaxing, calming, and..may prevent crime? When played in public places, classical music has shown to prevent and lower crime rates. Wow! This could be due to the calming effect or the sense of community classical ensues.

Looking to pick up some guitar lessons or try your hand at the ukulele? Classical is also a great place to start learning the basics of playing an instrument. It is the source of music theory and fundamentals.


The blues is all about rhythm. Rhythm and blues. Instead of challenging other parts of music making, blues focuses on creating something completely new out of changing where the rhythm patterns hit within the timing of the song.

Creativity doesn’t have to be recreating the wheel. It could just be moving the pegs around for a whole new look.


Envision progress and better health. Yes, really! Rap has shown to help those with depression, because many of the songs talk of someone who was in a tough place and beat the odds or recovered. This can be a source of hope or envisioning a better place to work toward.


Go the extra mile. Pop has shown to help you go further and harder in your workouts. The upbeat, optimistic melody and energy can distract you when the running gets tough, pushing you through to go even further.

Or as Beyonce once said, “Who run the world?” You..running.


Syncopation. Reggae’s focus is playing off the beat. Anything they want to highlight or accent is played on the downbeats. That’s what makes this syncopated sound that allows you to pick out a reggae song anywhere!

Reggae, like jazz and blues, likes to play around with the beat, making for unexpected shifts in the music.


It could make you happy! Country listeners are usually all-in for their country. There’s no wishy-washy opinion about this genre. But one thing I’ve noticed for sure, it’s something they turn to for joy; when they’re having a bad day and need a pick-me-up, when they’re spending time with family or friends, or when they’re celebrating big milestones. Country music fans may like other music, too, but country is their go-to for joy.

I’m not a country fan quite yet..but I’m starting to see the sunny side of it!

Have a Listen

Alright, have some fun with it now! It may take a few tries to like some of these, but you’ll be all the more interesting for it. When you enjoy different music, you’ll have something in common with anyone!

-> Want more Creativity Exercises? Creative thinking improves focus, original ideas, critical thinking skills, and problem-solving skills. Click here to try my post from last week on Problem-Solving With SCAMPER.

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