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Headphones

Could you live (happily) without music?

Living without music to dance to, or have on while you read, work, exercise or drive would be pretty dull, don't you think?

Recorded music is more accessible than ever today. You can listen to almost anything, wherever you are, for free, or very little money. Music is all too easy to take for granted, but just how important is music in your life?

To put it in perspective: Would you rather trade TV, movies, pizza, ice cream, beer, swimming, reading or --maybe the hardest for some of you -- the internet, for music?

The listener, from the iconic Maxell tape ads from the 1980s.

Maxell

For me it's a no brainer, music is a far bigger deal than any of those, by a long shot. Music raises my spirit, makes me think, and fuels my creativity. Sure, I could survive without music, but it would be a major loss.

Dr. Daniel Levitin's 2006 book, "This is your brain on music: The science of a human obsession" provides an in-depth exploration of how humans relate to music. Fun fact from the book: During gestation, at about 20 weeks, the human fetus' auditory system is fully functioning, and Levitin noted that Alexandra Lamont of Keele University in the UK observed that 1-year-old infants reacted to music they first heard in the womb! That's incredible; even before we're born we hear music, and we remember it later.

And at the other end of life's journey Levitin noted some people with severe Alzheimer's, some who can't remember their children's names, have no trouble singing songs from their youth! Music has a powerful imprint on our lives! Levitin is certainly qualified to discuss the subject at hand, he is a Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Neuroscience at McGill University.

I'm not suggesting that everyone loves music, but if you do, does that extend to the sound of your music? Isn't it about time to get a decent set of headphones or speakers? Toss those free ear buds and try the MonoPrice Hi-Fi Lightweight On-Ear Headphone; stop using that lame little Bluetooth speaker, and step up to a pair of Dayton B652 speakers and a Lepai LP202+ integrated amp. After you upgrade the sound of your music, even just a little bit, you'll enjoy it a lot more.