Conceptualizing control in everyday music listening: defining dominance

Krause, Amanda E., Mackin, Sophie, Mossman, Adam, Murray, Taylor, Oliver, Nathan, and Tee, Vern (2020) Conceptualizing control in everyday music listening: defining dominance. Music & Science, 3. pp. 1-13.

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Mehrabian and Russell’s Pleasure-Arousal-Dominance model states that people’s interactions and interpretation of their surroundings result from variations in three factors – pleasure, arousal, and dominance. Applied to music, pleasure has been operationalized as how much a person likes the music heard, arousal as how arousing the person considers the music to be, and dominance as the person’s control over the music heard. However, conceptualizing dominance broadly as control means that the construct is not well defined. This research aimed to define the elements related to a listener’s desire for control over music encountered in everyday life. Participants residing in Australia and USA (N ¼ 590) completed an online questionnaire. An exploratory factor analysis of the quantitative items identified five components defining control over music listening: “being personally in charge”, “selection by other people”, “contextual control”, “playback variety”, and “no need for control”. A thematic analysis of open-ended responses indicated additional facets of control including mood regulation, emotional investment, and identity. While the quantitative findings reaffirm previous research, the qualitative findings indicate previous conceptualizations of the control dimension have been limited. These results contribute to our understanding of the model’s dominance component with regard to explaining everyday music listening.

Item ID: 64232
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2059-2043
Keywords: choice, control, dominance, everyday listening, pleasure-arousal-dominance (PAD) model
Copyright Information: © The Author(s) 2020. Creative Commons Non Commercial CC BY-NC: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License ( which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (
Date Deposited: 04 Sep 2020 12:04
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5205 Social and personality psychology > 520505 Social psychology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9501 Arts and Leisure > 950101 Music @ 30%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 70%
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