Let me listen to Take That in peace

Amy Donohoe

Music shaming is a concept that means you are criticising someone for having a different taste in music in comparison to your own. As the Black-Eyed Peas once sang, where is the love?

At some point in our lives, everyone has listened to a song or an album that made them feel some sort of connection that words can’t describe. Music is powerful, and it’s also personal, one song could mean something else to somebody else, it just depends on what they’ve went through in life. We have songs that remind us of certain times in our lives, things like childhood, relationships and heartbreak. Music is there for us during the good times in life, and it is also there during the bad times.

Most people enjoy a specific genre of music, many are passionate about a certain artist, and some love so many different types of music. Music determines who we are, but not everyone respects each other’s music taste. The concept of shaming someone because of their taste in music is ridiculous. Of course, we all like different music, we are all different. We all like different types of food and we all have different style preferences. We are human.

The whole purpose of music is entertainment and enjoyment, but why are people being judged for expressing an interest in something that they enjoy? It is completely uncalled for to shame someone for such an absurd reason. It is not essential that you like the music that your friend likes, the world would be quite boring if you did.

Music is a “universal language,” it’s a form of art and like most pieces of art, it’s subjective. A person’s taste in music varies depending on many factors ranging from the type of music they were exposed to from an early age, their personal preference and their life experience. We shouldn’t be stereotypical either, for example some may think it’s weird for a man in his twenties to be enjoying a Shawn Mendes song or for a teenage girl to be headbanging to Bon Jovi. This prevents people from being able to express themselves and it could hold a person back from the best form of self-representation and self-expression. Disagreement is inevitable, but when it goes further it could make people regret showing that part of themselves.

All of us have a “guilty pleasures” playlist that we would be absolutely mortified if anyone else heard it. If your music is on shuffle and you’re with your friends, you’ve constant fear that the likes of Westlife or High School Musical will start playing. We should be free without judgement to blast whatever we want. We should be proud of it and have the ability play the music without feeling humiliated.

Why do we judge for expressing interest in something they enjoy? Maybe it’s because the music we like is very special to us, so it’s difficult to understand why someone would choose something else. It is completely unfair to shame someone for celebrating something that encourages them to express themselves. If there’s a certain type of music that makes you happy, you should be able to listen to it without feeling guilty or embarrassed. Nobody has to like every genre of music, but, they should be respectful to other people’s taste.

Judging someone based on personal differences can be viewed as having a shallow ability to listen. Music serves as therapy in many ways. It can be used to cope with emotions. Music shaming is more than just being verbal; it can act as a personal attack on someone. We should stop shaming other people’s opinion on music. Instead try, to understand why they’re attached to it.

Amy Donohoe
Image Credit: Orfhlaith Carragher