I listen to a lot of music. You probably already discerned that though. But I don't always listen to music for the same purpose. Most of the time, it's a combination of purposes. Here's my four main reasons for listening to music.
LISTENING FOR MOOD - Everyone does this! Music has to power to cheer, to energize, or to quiet. If I'm sad, I listen to music because 1) it usually distracts me from what's making me sad and 2) music and lyrics have the power to make you happy! This distraction is also part of the reason I listen to music while I run, to distract myself from the pain and suffocation I'm probably experiencing. Also, if I'm really tired, but need to get stuff done, I'll put on a bunch of my favorite loud, upbeat songs to get me going. Because music also has the power to quiet one's mind and heart, I listen to it during my devotions. But more on that later.
LISTENING FOR BACKGROUND - This is why I listen to music so that I can focus/study/not listen to me thoughts as I'm trying to fall asleep. I also listen to instrumental music when I'm reading because it keeps my mind from wandering. Music during devotions also helps me focus. And the Star Wars soundtrack is the perfect background music to make any mundane task feel EPIC!
LISTENING FOR WORSHIP - Besides concentration and background music, I listen to music during my devotions for worship. We had a Sunday School lesson a few months ago on listening to music "as unto the Lord" and that has really stuck with me. When you listen to songs with lyrics that glorify God, you can sort of praise God with them yourself. It's hard to put into words, but it's like you're singing to God even though you're only listening. It's a powerful thing!
LISTENING TO LEARN - And this is the big kahuna that is probably why I started listening to a bunch of music in the first place. My piano teacher a few years ago said that you should listen to who you want to play like. So I made a piano playlist and listened to it nonstop for a few months. Then I discovered that there are great background piano parts in a lot of music I listen to. Since playing for southern gospel groups is what I want to do with my life, I listen to a lot of Southern Gospel. And then I try to emulate it on the piano! (And I'm not the only one who does this. Trevor Conkle, the pianist for the HOPPERS, does it too!) Also, if I'm learning a piano piece by ear or even with sheet music, I often listen to it like 50x times in a row to get it in my head. It's a lot easier to read the notes when you know what they're supposed to sound like!
Well, that's the four main reasons I listen to music. Why do you listen to music?