If you're having trouble getting a date, French researchers suggest that picking the right soundtrack could improve the odds. Women were more prepared to give their number to an 'average' young man after listening to romantic background music, according to research that appears June 18 in the journal Psychology of Music.
There's plenty of research indicating that the media affects our behaviour. Violent video games or music with aggressive lyrics increase the likelihood of aggressive behaviour, thoughts and feelings -- but do romantic songs have any effect? This question prompted researchers Nicolas Guéguen and Céline Jacob from the Université de Bretagne-Sud along with Lubomir Lamy from Université de Paris-Sud to test the power of romantic lyrics on 18-20 year old single females. And it turns out that at least one romantic love song did make a difference.
Guéguen and Jacob were part of a research team that had already shown how romantic music played in a flower shop led to male customers spending more money. This time the researchers used questionnaires to pinpoint agreed-upon neutral and romantic songs. They chose 'Je l'aime à mourir', a well-known love song by French songwriter Francis Cabrel, and the neutral song 'L'heure du thé', by Vincent Delerm. A group of young women separate from the main study rated 12 young male volunteers for attractiveness, and the researchers picked the one rated closest to 'average' to help with the experiment.
The researchers then set up a scenario where the 87 females each spent time in a waiting room with background music playing, before moving to a different room where the experimenter instructed her to discuss the difference between two food products with the young man. Once the experimenter returned, she asked them to wait for a few moments alone, and this gave the 'average' male a chance to use his standard chat up line: "My name is Antoine, as you know, I think you are very nice and I was wondering if you would give me your phone number. I'll phone you later and we can have a drink together somewhere next week.'
The love song in the waiting room almost doubled Antoine's chances of getting a woman's number -- 52% of participants responded to his advances under the influence of Francis Cabrel, whereas only 28% of those who had heard the 'neutral' song by Vincent Delerm offered their details.
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Love ballads make women more likely to give you their number.
Well, now I know to stop trying to serenade girls with Cannibal Corpse's "Butchered at Birth." Item!