Home > art, music psychology, psychology > Romantic Songs Make Women More Open To Dates…

Romantic Songs Make Women More Open To Dates…

Many studies have showed that that media with violent or aggressive content (such as violent videogames) may increase aggressive behaviour and thoughts (Bushman & Huesmann, 2006). Moreover, music and lyrics can influence people’s behaviour; prosocial songs were found to be associated with a significant increase in tipping behaviour (Jacob, Guéguen & Boulbry, 2010), male customers exposed to romantic songs spent more money than when no music was played or when non-romantic pop music was played (Jacob, Guéguen, Boulbry & Selmi, 2009).
Guéguen, Jacob and Lamy (2010) investigated if exposure to romantic songs could have an effect on behaviour. In particular, they tested if background romantic music would influence the dating behaviour of young single female participants. The stimuli used were a romantic song ‘Je l’aime à mourir’ by the french songwriter Francis Cabrel (was selected after a pilot study) and the neutral song was ‘L’heure du
thé’ by Vincent Delerm.

183 single female participants were exposed to romantic lyrics or to neutral ones while waiting for the experiment to start. Five minutes later, the participant interacted with a young male confederate in a marketing survey. During a break, the male confederate asked the participant for her phone number

In the romantic song lyrics condition 52.2% (23/44) complied with the confederate’s request , compared to 27.9% (12/43) in the neutral song lyrics condition. The difference was found significant (χ2(1, N = 83) = 5.37, p = .02, r = .24).

According to the authors these results support the General Learning Model (GLM), which was initially proposed by Buckley and Anderson (2006) to explain the influence of aggressive media (i.e. videogames) on behaviour, but was updated recently by Greitemeyer (2009) to include media exposure in general. The GLM proposes that exposure to media affects the internal states of individuals (aggressive media increase aggressive behaviour/thoughts, prosocial media promote prosocial behaviour/thoughts).
Guéguen, Jacob and Lamy (2010) suggest that the results of this particular experiment could be explain by music’s ability to induce positive affect (Lenton & Martin, 1991)

and that positive affect is related with receptivity in a courtship request (Guéguen, 2008). Thus, it is possible that the romantic song lyrics activated positive affect
which, in turn, made the participant more receptive to a request for a date. It’s also
possible that the romantic song lyrics acted as a prime that, in turn, led to the display
of behaviour associated with this prime (Bargh, Chen & Burrows, 1996).


Bargh, J. A., Chen, M., & Burrows, L. (1996). Automaticity of social behavior: Direct effect of trait construct and stereotype activation on action. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 71(2), 230–244.

Buckley, K. E., & Anderson, C. A. (2006). A theoretical model of the effects and consequences of playing video games. In P. Vorderer and J. Bryant (Eds.), Playing video games: Motives, responses, and consequences (pp. 363–378). Mahwah NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Bushman, Brad J., & Huesmann, L. R. (2006). Short-term and Long-term Effects of Violent Media on Aggression in Children and Adults. Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 160, 348-352.

Greitemeyer, T. (2009). Effects of songs with prosocial lyrics on prosocial thoughts, affect, and behavior. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 45, 186–190.

Jacob, C., Guéguen, N., and Boulbry, G. (2010). Effects of songs with prosocial lyrics on tipping behavior in a restaurant. International Journal of Hospitality Management.

Jacob, C., Guéguen, N., Boulbry, G., & Selmi, S. (2009). ‘Love is in the air’: Congruency between background music and goods in a flower shop. International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, 19, 75–79.

Lenton, S. R. & Martin, P. R. (1991). The contribution of music vs. instructions in the musical mood induction procedure. Behavioral Research Therapy, 29, 623–625.

ResearchBlogging.orgGueguen, N., Jacob, C., & Lamy, L. (2010). ‘Love is in the air’: Effects of songs with romantic lyrics on compliance with a courtship request Psychology of Music, 38 (3), 303-307 : http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0305735609360428

  1. 20/06/2010 at 22:10

    Incredible story

  2. Antoine
    22/06/2010 at 09:54

    This song is very quiet and soft, very romantic, without any sexual tension of any kind, it’s surprising that it could have an effect this big on fast flirting with females this young.

    And props to the guy, 35 phone numbers in the time of one study is quite good :).

    I don’t understand the numbers though.
    “183 single female participants were exposed to romantic lyrics or to neutral ones”
    “In the romantic song lyrics condition 52.2% (23/44) complied with the confederate’s request , compared to 27.9% (12/43) in the neutral song lyrics condition”. 44 + 43 = 87 ???
    “The difference was found significant (χ2(1, N = 83) = 5.37, p = .02, r = .24).” N = 83 ?

  3. Joe Shuren
    25/06/2010 at 21:45

    How can you make sure the General Learning Model is not a tautology, self-fulfilling prophecy? If the song didn’t stimulate the phone number response, then would you say it was not sufficiently “romantic” and so on with “aggressive” or “pro-social”? For that label is once-removed from reality, just like a stock market price is what buyers and sellers agree, not the “right” price of the asset, and so the psychology is what other people think not yourself.

  4. 26/06/2010 at 15:38

    This is good blog message, I will keep this in mind. If you add more video and pictures because it helps understanding 🙂

  5. 10/11/2010 at 13:41

    romantic lyrics sustains a youthful feeling, makes a person adopt happy thoughts… thanks for sharing the studies. you may want to check romantic song quotes from quotes from lyrics site. Thanks mate, regards!

  6. 14/11/2010 at 14:58

    my mom would always frequently visit flower shops because she loves fresh flowers on our house :.:

  1. 21/06/2010 at 17:43
  2. 24/06/2010 at 05:56
  3. 26/06/2010 at 09:57

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