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Music activates the same parts of the brain and causes the same neurochemical cocktail (Serotonin and dopamine) as a lot of other pleasurable activities like orgasms or eating chocolate --
Music is much like food. Some food tastes good. Some music sounds good. The same can be said for things we touch or smell or see. It's really just a great big mystery. Our senses pick up something that it likes and sends it into our brains, triggering a reaction. That reaction is a good feeling. That good feeling can be emotion, adrenaline, etc.
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There is evidence that rhythmic beating, similar to the heart beat they hear while in the womb, can be reassuring and pleasurable to babies.Other than that, I would think preferred music is more to do with nurture rather than nature. This would eventually develop into a 'personal choice' as the individual's personality develops.
have you ever stood outside in nature and really listened? i mean, really listened? nature makes music! the birds sing, the wind whistles, the oceans howl, and what about humans? we have voices! large, beautiful voices that yell and SING! and we have hands to play instruments... so that- THAT is why we listen to music. it is an essential part of our very nature! life wouldn't exist without it.
I think that Music started, basically, as a social group enhancing activity. Marching, war dancing, rain dancing and other activities are good for strengthening social bonds- a good, fun, social exercise. When we listen to music on our own we get a dose of the same without anyone else needing to be there because we have learned the associations.It could well have started of with heartbeats in the womb.