Country Music & Suicide

According to an article published back in 2007, a study shows a link between listening to country music and committing suicide. The article asserts, “Country music is hypothesized to nurture a suicidal mood through its concerns with problems common in the suicidal population, such as marital discord, alcohol abuse, and alienation from work.” I don’t know about you, but while country music of today still talks about these issues, that sounds like the country music of the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. The report goes on to say that “the greater the airtime devoted to country music, the greater the white suicide rate.” So basically if you listen to country music while on a road trip from Georgia to Florida, you’ll probably want to commit suicide by the time you get down there? Or will it take a while to sink in, and by the time you get back home to Georgia, you’ll want to commit suicide?

What I don’t understand are the terms under which the study was conducted under. What kind of country music did the people in the metropolitan areas listen to? And for exactly hoe long? By which artists? Were they male or female? Does it matter if the particular song or songs were up tempo songs or ballads? I first started truly listening to country music when I was in the 4th grade. I listened to LeAnn Rimes, (I used to have her song “How Do I Live” on repeat while my sister on my way to gymnastics! I’ve always listened to her.) Rascal Flatts, Terri Clark, Toby Keith, Kenny Chesney and other artists. While the thought of my immortality does cross my mind sometimes (who doesn’t think about their dying day–presumably when they’re old and gray? ) but I never thought about seriously ending my life prematurely. I still listen to country music, but not as much as I did back then. I do indulge in the sounds of LeAnn Rimes, Rascal Flatts, and Carrie Underwood more than other artists, and while their songs may deal with serious topics, they don’t push me to think about ending my own life. Maybe it’s because I listen to other genres of music as too. Who knows?

You can read the rest of the article here, although the entire report is unavailable because it seems to be out of date.

The Monkey Cage
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5 thoughts on “Country Music & Suicide

  1. I don't even think I've read anything like this in a while..But music works in ways as such and it's a happy place for me to say so since one of my passions is music..but Most of my songs that I want to learn alot from and really get are country and it's just great…It really is

  2. This is really interesting to me because I never thought country music would make people want to attempt suicide. I'm not a big fan of country music but i mean country music is kind of mellow to me, i just want to know how it pushes people to even thinking about killing themselves.

  3. It's how you take the music. Alot of country music is about pain and the expressing of the pain. But that doesn't mean go kill yourself. Music is simply a release, a expression, a breakthrough. The sadness you hear in these songs come from the deep feelings of everyday life. Alot almost anyone can relate to. Country music is not to blame for any forms of suicide. It all depends on a person's mindset.

  4. As you know music has its different genre and people has to different types, but music can make you feel in a differend mode ex. happy, sad, loved, admired, and much more.suicide on the other hand is spotted differently because you can listen to a specific song that can make you feel like ( i dont belong here anymore) and others that can make you feel like you're not alone..

  5. Jo says:

    I think the type of music (specifically the songs) a person feeling suicidal listens to reflect the person's feeling at that time. I feel like this could be any song from any genre.

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