Saturday, 9 February 2013

Music influencing a dream

Have you ever experienced music influence a dream? I'm not referring to listening to a song prior to sleeping and it shapes what you dream about — I mean sleeping while a song is playing and the real-time music manifests itself within a dream. Your mind's "characters" and the "you" inside an affected dream will be aware of the music and will often respond to it.

I have two memorable experiences of this. The first time was over four years ago: I was dreaming about riding in a pickup truck with Dad, travelling down a lengthy onramp onto a freeway. I turned on our vehicle's radio before we reached the freeway and Lady Gaga's "Just Dance" started playing inside the dream. In reality, my actual radio had activated and was playing the song; my brain had reacted to the song by having a character — me, in this case — perform an action so that the song would become a part of the dream.

The second time was this morning. The dream involved me attending a fancy event with friends and family; at one point, I sat down with a handful of friends and family at a coffee table surrounded by couches. A large radio — unlikely to ever be present at the type of event my dream was portraying — started to play "Broken Strings" by James Morrison featuring Nelly Furtado, and both I and at least one of the other characters reacted to it. Both the radio and the song were irrelevant to the rest of the dream — the song playing on a nearby outside source brought it into my thoughts.

I have had this happen several times between these two dreams, but these two are the most memorable: the first dream is my original experience into outside music altering dreams and the second is in my recent memory. I like it whenever it occurs because the outcome is always an enhanced dream, although I have to be in a light sleep for it to happen, however, as my dreams don't appear to be affected by music if I'm deeply sleeping.

I attempted to learn what the exact term for this is, but I was unable to find it. Is this something that you have experienced? I know members of family who have and I am interested to learn if it has happened to others.


  1. I had a really bizarre dream based on music and Patrick and a friend... it was odd.

  2. Ah yes, I've had a similar experience with Eisblume's "Eisblumen". If you look up the offical video on youtube, you'll see that it's a dark, animated video which happens to feature snow. One time I fell asleep while listening to that song and I dreamt I was walking within a dark forest and it was snowing :D It wasn't just the song itself that enhanced the dream but the video also had an influence on it as well :)

    1. Hi Jen! :) Wow, that sounds like it was an awesome dream! I haven't had one affected exactly like that before. :) I'll have a listen to that song.