Ever wonder why you get obsessed with a song for a few days and then don't go back to it for weeks? Well, it might have something to do with your addictive personality, or it might be about your fertility. Apparently a woman's fertility affects her musical preferences, with tastes changing throughout the month. Bizarre as it may sound, researchers at University of Sussex say that women at the most fertile point in their monthly cycles may be more drawn to men who make complex music. Huh.
The study looked at 1,500 women, average age 28, who were not pregnant, breast-feeding, or using hormonal birth control at the time. The women listened to clips of music and discussed what type of theoretical relationship they'd like to have with the musician. And it turns out that at peak fertility, men who make complex music were the most sexually attractive, though most women were only interested in a potential short-term relationship — nothing long term.
This seems like it has to be some sort of evolutionary thing, and in fact the researchers were quick to note that Darwin once posited that "music evolved via sexual selection." They added that "These results suggest that women may acquire genetic benefits for offspring by selecting musicians able to create more complex music as sexual partners," also noting that musical ability "could reflect excellent physical condition and learning capacity."
Which sounds about right, I guess. Plus there's also the fact that people who can create complex anything probably tend to have some sort of cognitive edge over people who stick to the simple stuff. Added all up, it makes some sense that women would be evolutionary drawn to such musicians.
It's still really weird, even weirder than that study that said women who touch boxer shorts get really turned on, or the one that says women prefer watching TV to having sex, or that new one that says women with wider hips have more one night stands. In fact I'm going to go out on a limb and say that scientists are maybe a little over fascinated with women's sex drive. Then again, they have ignored it for a really freaking long time, so I guess this is an improvement? Maybe?
Either way, it looks like your hormones are still affecting your music tastes. But maybe it will help you snag a one night stand with a cute guitar player? Let's stick to silver linings, and maybe cheer ourselves up with dessert. Take that, stupid hormones.