10 Songs That Put You in a Good Mood, According to Experts


P!nk cover artwork for "Missundaztood" via Arista

P!nk has one of the songs that puts you in a good mood, according to experts and music psychologists – Author Anne Erickson, Cover artwork for “Missundaztood” via Arista

Music is really healing. There are certain songs that put you in a good mood, over and over again. It’s always handy to have those songs on hand, for a dreary day. So, which songs do experts and music psychologists recommend you listen to for optimum happiness?

Songs That Put You in a Good Mood

The answer is somewhat subjective. Music is tied to feelings and emotions. So, someone might feel really happy and nostalgic listening to Metallica, but for someone else, they could hate hearing Metallica’s music. Music is very personal, so in general, the music that reminds you of happy times in life and loving people should be the music that you turn to when you’re down. For me, I love the early-2000s post-grunge and nu-metal. Sure, it’s very angst-y, heavy music. But, it puts me in a good mood, because it reminds me of the era when I first discovered rock music. That said, aside from personal preferences, experts have done studies about the music and songs that put you in a good mood.

As for the general traits of songs that put you in a good mood, Mullerlight recently teamed with music psychologist, Dr. Michael Bonshor, to find out the formula for what makes the happiest tune. They conducted research and surveyed 2,000 people.

According to the formula they put together, “uplifting songs include a tempo of 137 BPM, verse-chorus-verse-chorus structure and combine reliable predictability with elements of surprise – such as a key change or unexpected set of notes,” they explain. Moreover, the official “happy song formula” is a combination of a major key; 137 BPM; 7th chords; a strong beat; four beats in every bar; a short intro; a verse and chorus repeated twice; repeated riffs; a high volume; a bright tone; and some predictability but with a little surprise.

As for genres of music, the happiest genres were pop (49%) followed by rock (25%), dance (17%), R&B (13%) and classical (12%). The poll also discovered that it takes an average of only 14 seconds for these happy tracks to begin working and making the listener feel good.

Mulletlight also released a song created using these specific happiness indicators. Find it here.

According to the study, the following 10 songs have the best chance of putting you in a good mood. Looking at the list, these songs are not really my musical taste. But, they carry the characteristics listed in the story. So, science says that if you’re feel down, crank these songs to turn around that bad mood. It’s worth noting that most of these songs have happy subject matters, which should help, too, although that wasn’t included int he study. I don’t see any tear-jerkers on here. Some of these songs are one-hit wonders, too. Also, I had some readers send in their feel-good playlists, which you can find on Spotify.

10 Songs That Put You in a Good Mood:

Good Vibrations by The Beach Boys
I Got You (I Feel Good) by James Brown
House of Fun by Madness
Get the Party Started by P!nk
Uptown Girl by Billy Joel
Sun Is Shining by Bob Marley
I Get Around by The Beach Boys
YMCA by Village People
Waterloo by ABBA
September by Earth, Wind & Fire

Anne Erickson
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Posted by Anne Erickson | Music, Rock, Rock News