College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Title

The Psychological Profile of a Rock Band: Using Intellectual and Personality Measures with Musicians

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

6-2009

Publication Title

Medical Problems of Performing Artists

ISSN

0885-1158

Volume

24

Issue/No.

2

Abstract

Unique personality and intelligence factors are important components of the makeup of any individual. In addition, emotional factors, such as a person's inherent levels of joy, anger, passion, worry, grief, and dedication, influence their creative expression. The picture becomes more complicated when there are four individual members with different emotional, intelligence, and personality profiles who must collaborate to make one composition of a creative group. The inner workings of a band are intrinsic and may produce inner conflict, affecting not only themselves and family members but also management and production teams. While there is a growing amount of literature on cohesiveness and attitudinal influences on performance in other areas of psychology, the lack of literature and exploration into the dynamics of cohesiveness and group attitude within the musical domain is significant. Using the WAIS-III, MMPI-2, Rorschach Inkblot Test, and an interview, the authors took a psychological "snapshot" of a band. Making music is often the first thing a musician states as his life's work, but as this case study illustrates, intra-band difficulties including severe depression, anxiety, control issues, and family disruptions are significant issues that arise, affecting the success goals of the group.

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