Music-enhanced recall: an effect of mood congruence, emotion arousal or emotion function?

Michael John Tesoriero, Nikki Sue Rickard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to determine the most informative framework to understand the effect of emotion-inducing music on the short-term recall of information about narratives. Ninety-five participants (range = 18-58 years) were randomly allocated to one of four groups differentiated by the type of music presented to them, which was either happy (n = 26), sad (n = 19), fearful (n = 25), or calm (n = 25). Participants listened to music, followed by a positively or negatively emotionally-valenced narrative, and free recall of the narrative was tested approximately five minutes later. The results provided strongest support for the mood congruence theory in this context. After exposure to positive music, recall of positive information was significantly greater than recall of negative information.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)340 - 356
Number of pages17
JournalMusicae Scientiae
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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