Why do we enjoy listening to music ?

My son posed a great question.
Why do we enjoy listening to music? Why does music do to us chemically, psychologically, physiologically etc.

Anyone know of any interesting articles , web sites etc.


I second that, Excellent book!

From an ad on an audio magazine not too long ago:

"Music is what life wants to be".
It evokes or releases intense emotions that our structured and mannered lives don't always allow us to feel. Just why our brain decodes certain sounds as elation, despair, melancholy is something I don't know, and maybe that book explains it.
It's hard to answer to answer with hard evidence, but I read I think music invokes the pleasure centers of the brain and causes the release of endorphins. This can be accomplished by many other exteranl stimuli but the bigger question is why repetative listening to the same music elicits the same response over and over again. Any ideas?
Actually, not everyone likes to listen to music. Only persons of superior intellect, a profound understanding of the world, and a highly developed sense of humility enjoy listening to music. Don't you agree ?
As far as I know, nearly all societies have developed music, as part of their cultural development. 10000 years ago, there were instruments to make what we would recognise, as music. I am not sure how good their HiFi systems were, but they had music. From memory, researchers have looked at changes in EEG's when people are listening to music.
Another very interesting recent discovery, is that speech and musical ability are quite separate. A stroke sufferer, I believe, lost speech, but could communicate by signing sentences. Weird, but true.
We came across another book...

Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks (2007)

We are going to check it out too.