The Science of Singing Along

The Science of Happiness

Oct 26 2023 • 16 mins

For time immemorial, humans have connected deeply through singing with one another. We explore the science behind this, plus how group singing benefits other aspects of our health.

Link to Episode Transcript: https://tinyurl.com/bdzkmezu

Episode summary:

When was the last time you sang with another person? This week, we’re digging into the science of singing — and more specifically, the science of singing with others, with author Casper ter Kuile. Casper started hosting signing groups in his home as a way to feel connected to others and build a community after moving to a new city. He found that singing is a powerful mode of communication that’s entirely different from talking, by letting people have fun together before even learning what the other does for work. We also hear from psychologist Arla Good, about how group singing can act as a tool for social bonding through a mood-boosting oxytocin response.

Today’s guests:

Casper ter Kuile is an author and speaker who focuses on themes of community building, rituals and spirituality.

Read Casper’s book, The Power of Ritual: https://tinyurl.com/5653xymp

Learn about Casper’s latest project, The Nearness: https://tinyurl.com/yc76wjvj

Follow Casper on Instagram:https://tinyurl.com/muueecw2

Follow Casper on Twitter: https://tinyurl.com/mr2jsufk

Arla Good is a psychologist at Toronto Metropolitan University whose research specializes in the benefits of group singing on well-being.

Learn more about Arla and her work: https://tinyurl.com/3fxwsffs

Learn about Arla’s work with the SingWell Project: https://tinyurl.com/4acdhdc6

Resources from The Greater Good Science Center:

How Music Helps Us Be More Creative: https://tinyurl.com/4mj6vs44

Four Ways Music Strengthens Social Bonds: https://tinyurl.com/y257y25p

How Music Bonds Us Together: https://tinyurl.com/np3z3cn

Five Ways Music Can Make You Healthier: https://tinyurl.com/4ckbtc2e

Where Music and Empathy Converge in the Brain: https://tinyurl.com/23tehxms

More Resources on Group Singing:

BBC -The world's most accessible stress reliever: https://tinyurl.com/37atkk78

Washington Post - Singing is good for you. Singing with others may be even better: https://tinyurl.com/mv3a525d

Oxford - Choir singing improves health, happiness – and is the perfect icebreaker: https://tinyurl.com/3z78634n

Ted - Choral Connections: The Surprising Benefits of Singing Together: https://tinyurl.com/y5yu236z

Have you ever sung with a group? Email us at happinesspod@berkeley.edu or use the hashtag #happinesspod.

Help us share The Science of Happiness!

Rate us on Spotify and share this link with someone who might like the show: https://tinyurl.com/yzazbec4

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