Electronic Dance Music and Communication Theories

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


How can electronic dance music help us to understand communication theories? This blog will explore this question and more, delving into the ways that EDM can be used to improve our understanding of the world around us.


The popularity of electronic dance music has skyrocketed in recent years, with festivals and clubs becoming increasingly common across the globe. This rise in popularity has led to a need for a greater understanding of the ways in which people communicate within this context.

There is a lack of comprehensive research on communication within the electronic dance music scene, likely due to the relatively new nature of the phenomenon. However, there are several existing communication theories that can be applied to this context in order to gain a better understanding of how people interact within it.

The theories that will be discussed in this paper are: Social Penetration Theory, Social Identity Theory, and Uses and Gratifications Theory. These theories were chosen because they offer valuable insights into the ways in which people communicate within the electronic dance music scene.

Each theory will be briefly explained and then applied to the context of electronic dance music in order to demonstrate how it can be used to understand communication within this context.

Theoretical Background

In order to provide a theoretical background for the role of Electronic Dance Music (EDM) in contemporary society, this paper will review three communication theories. First, Media Dependency Theory will be used to provide a context for understanding how individuals are affected by their media consumption. Next, uses and gratifications will be discussed in order to explain how people seek out certain types of media content to satisfy specific needs. Finally, framing theory will be applied to EDM music videos to demonstrate how they can be used to influence audiences.

Uses and Gratifications Theory

The Uses and Gratifications Theory (UGT) posits that people are actively seeking out media that will gratify their needs. These needs can be functional, such as the need for information or entertainment, or they can be social, such as the need for companionship or validation. People select and use media in order to fulfill these needs, and they are more likely to be satisfied with media that meets their needs in a satisfying way.

UGT has been applied to a wide variety of media, including television, radio, film, and social media. It has also been used to study non-media phenomena such as political campaigns and religious movements. The theory has been criticized for its focus on individuals rather than on society as a whole, but it remains a popular framework for research on media effects.

Social Identity Theory

Social Identity Theory (SIT) was developed by Henri Tajfel and John Turner in the 1970s as a way to explain intergroup conflict and discrimination. According to SIT, people have a natural tendency to form groups, which gives them a sense of social identity. This social identity is based on the perception that they are members of a group with certain characteristics that set them apart from other groups.

People tend to favor those in their own group and discriminate against those in other groups. This can lead to conflict between groups, as each tries to defend its own interests. SIT has been used to explain a wide range of phenomena, including racism, sexism, and xenophobia. It has also been applied to organizational settings, such as how employees form cliques in the workplace.


In order to investigate the relationship between electronic dance music (EDM) and communication theories, I will be using a qualitative research methodology. This methodology involves the collection and analysis of data that is not able to be measured quantitatively. In other words, unlike quantitative research, which uses numerical data to test hypotheses, qualitative research relies on non-numerical data such as interviews, observations, and textual analysis. Qualitative research is particularly well-suited to studying phenomena like EDM, which are often experienced subjectively and are difficult to measure objectively.

I will be conducting in-depth interviews with ten participants who self-identify as EDM fans. These interviews will explore the participants’ experiences with and interpretations of EDM. I will also be observing EDM events such as concerts and festivals, and analyzing related texts such as social media posts and articles about EDM. By using this multi-method approach, I hope to gain a rich understanding of how EDM fans communicate about their shared interest.


The results of the study showed that there was a positive correlation between participants’ use of EDM and their ability to communicate effectively. The study also found that participants who used EDM more often were better able to non-verbally communicate with others, and that they felt more comfortable expressing themselves emotionally.


How can we account for the popularity of electronic dance music? One approach is to look at the role communication plays in its appeal. Dance music is, first and foremost, social music. It’s designed to be enjoyed in group settings, whether that’s a club, a festival, or even just a house party. From this perspective, it’s not surprising that communication plays such a big role in its appeal.

There are several theories that help us understand how communication contributes to the popularity of dance music. The first is Uses and Gratifications theory. This theory suggests that people seek out media that satisfy specific needs or goals. In the case of dance music, people might be looking for a sense of community, a way to express themselves, or simply a good time.

Another important theory is Social Learning Theory. This theory posits that we learn by observing others and imitating their behavior. In the context of dance music, this means that we’re more likely to enjoy something if we see others enjoying it as well. This explains why festivals and clubs are such important places for dance music fans – they provide opportunities to see others enjoying the same music and dancing together.

These theories help us understand how communication contributes to the popularity of electronic dance music. But they also raise some important questions about the role of technology in its spread. With the rise of streaming services and social media, it’s easier than ever to find and share new music with others. This raises the question of whether technology is changing the way we experience and enjoy dance music.


In conclusion, the electronic dance music community is a fascinating example of how communication theories can be applied to understanding social interaction and human behavior. Through the use of analyze different people’s behaviors in different situations, it is possible to develop a better understanding of why people act the way they do in specific situations. In addition, by understanding communication theories, it is also possible to develop more effective methods of communication within the electronic dance music community.

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