International research released by Deezer shows that the best age for parents to influence their children is before the age of 10
Survey results of 10,000 parents in Brazil, Germany, France, UK and US provide a fascinating snapshot of parent’s desire and tactics to shape kid’s music tastes
72% of polled parents all over the world actively try to influence their kids’ music tastes
The best time for parents in Brazil, France, Germany, UK and US to influence their children’s future music taste is before age 10, according to new research by global music streaming service Deezer. The international research also reveals that there is a golden time for educating kids on different genres and broadening their preferences later in life.
Deezer combined a survey of 10,000 parents with children under 18 in five countries with a literature review by Dr Hauke Egermann from the Department of Music at the University of York. In the survey, 73% of parents across five countries report their children react most positively to hearing their favourite music before the age of 10. The literature review conducted by Dr Egermann’s supports these findings and shows that the prime age to influence children’s future music tastes is between eight and ten.
After the age of 10, children become less receptive to liking unfamiliar genres. Just 9% of parents with teenage children reported positive responses when playing their favourite music to their kids, even though 21% of respondents wanted their kids to start liking their music between 11-15 years old.
Deezer’s study also shows that the vast majority of parents have a strong desire to influence their kids’ musical taste. Seven in ten respondents (72%) try to get their children to enjoy their favourite songs, while a whopping 89% of polled parents believe it’s important to broaden their child’s musical horizons. Nearly a third of respondents (28%) have played their children music they consider to be culturally important. According to Dr Egermann, this can be beneficial for children, as exposure to a larger variety of music is linked by prior academic study to positive social outcomes and adaptation later in life.
While nearly half of parents (47%) choose to play their children music that reminds them of their own childhood, dads (75%) want their children to appreciate ‘their’ music more than mums (70%). Mums, however, see better responses than dads: 41% report that their kids loved the music they shared, while 25% of dads found their children reacted negatively.
Parent across the world use a variety of tactics to influence their kids music tastes. These include playing songs in the car ‘because they can’t escape’, or dancing to make tracks more fun. In addition, 56% have taken their child to a live music event such as a concert, gig or festival, with 16% considering it the perfect occasion to help their children discover new music
Sadly, heavy metal fans may struggle to influence their kids with this genre, as 21% say their children found it the most challenging to accept and reported negative reactions. On average across Brazil, France, Germany, UK and US, pop was the easiest genre for kids to get into (94% positive reaction), with positive reactions to other music genres including dance (91%), hip hop (91%) and rock (88%).
Deezer's research shows that parents experienced a mixed reaction to children hearing their favourite genre of music. The below list contains music genres that children like hearing the most, split across each market.
Parents favourite music genres that children like the most
Gospel (97%), Brazilian Pop (96%), (Rock 94%)
Pop (93%), Dance (92%), Easy Listening (89%)
Dance (93%), Pop (94%), Gospel (93%)
Pop (95%), Rock (88%), Dance (88%)
Dance (91%), Pop (94%), Easy Listening (89%)
Deezer also discovered the percentage of parents in each country encouraging their children to like the same music as them:
Parents actively influencing their child’s music taste
Aurélien Hérault, Deezer’s Chief Research & Data Officer says: “It’s amazing to see that an overwhelming majority of parents want to share their favourite songs with their children. Good music may transcend time, but as a parent, I know that seeing your kids appreciate a song you love brings you closer together. There’s no more excuse, streaming offers people easy access to music across every genre, so you can make sure your children will truly benefit from early exposure to a wider range of songs and genres.”
Dr Hauke Egermann, University of York, says: “Children have an ‘openness’ to new music, and this means parents have an important role to play in developing the music tastes of their kids. However, time is of the essence, as parental influence is most likely to be effective during the critical time period before age 10, when puberty begins. During adolescence, children tend to gravitate away from their parents’ choices and are more influenced by their peers. By playing children a variety of genres before this critical period, research on familiarisation suggests they will enjoy lots of different types of music as adults. The benefits of having a wider taste in music include the ability to manage their emotions more effectively, socialise and bond with others more easily, as well to have a better understanding of other cultures.”
To celebrate these findings, Deezer editors have created global playlists that features classic tracks from a whole range of music genres to give parents in Brazil, US, France, Germany and UK an invaluable starting point to enjoy some of the most iconic songs and bands in music. You can access the ‘Childhood Tunes’ playlists here.
Deezer’s Family plan provides six profiles with one login, helping you discover music for everyone. Head to www.deezer.com to discover more.
Dr Hauke Egermann’s literary review is available to view here.