There is a special kind of feeling when it comes to listening to your favourite music while driving on your car, in a bus or any form of traveling from one point to another, music on the road gives a sense of determination , nostalgia and it cranks inspiration to a maximum level. This is very interesting, it’s a context that makes the power of music feel a lot stronger, wether it is seeing things passing by (nostalgia) leaving from one place to another (determnation) or taking a road trip with friends (happiness) it’s a thing we all love to do.
There are so many songs that are associated with being on the road, there are hundreds of playlists in YouTube, Spotify and more that it would be curious to have a closer look into what makes it such a particular pleasure.
Country is a genre that fits almost too perfectly with this “on the road” vibe, it’s no surprise that one of the most famous country songs is called “On the Road Again”. Of course one could argue there are some contexts that ask for different types of music in order to feel more of what the music wants to offer, for example: if a person is driving in the city a night, the lights and reflections work nicely with jazz and electronic house music. On the other hand if you are on the open road maybe country or rock works better. In the end this may not matter depending on the musical taste of each person, but it does show that different genres evoke different feelings and not every music is fit for every moment.
There have also been studies that show how much impact music can have in our driving. According to directauto.com:
We know that music alone can make us feel good. Whether you’re listening through your headphones at the gym or a pair of speakers at home, there’s evidence that music produces the same feel-good hormones you get when you hug a loved one. It’s also associated with immunity-boosting antibodies and can be an effective treatment for a variety of conditions like premature birth and Parkinson’s disease (to name a few).
Similarly, studies have found that listening to music you like while driving can help influence safe behavior, positively impact mood, lower breathing rate, reduce driver stress and aggression, and help drivers focus. Additionally, driving performance in high demand situations was not found to be negatively affected by music. Music fans, rejoice!
However most people don’t listen to music to focus, they listen because the love the music that’s playing, want to sing along or just want to entertain themselves during traffic.
According to another study:
Listening to music could be […] a preventive measure in favor of cardiovascular health in situations of intense stress, such as driving during rush hour.Prof. Vitor Engrácia Valenti
There are also a few things that should be avoided, since music can also be a distraction.
One of the things that makes music a distraction is high volume, because there are too many things happening around us when we drive, and while it also depends on being on a highway or the streets, it’s always good to be able to hear what’s happenning around you.
This mostly happens with teens that are having a good time, but good times have to be tempered in order to prevent any accidents.
So listening to music while behind the wheel or as a passenger is in general very good in many ways, it’s fun to play around which songs are best for the day and which are the best at night, some of them will make you relax and focus, but remember safety first, and safety often means volume control when it comes to music on wheels.