What music are UConn students listening to?

Sathia Diaz (left) shares what music he's listening to on his iPhone in the UConn Student Union on Thursday, Feb. 25, 2016. (Diler Haji/The Daily Campus)

There is a real sound to UConn when walking down the bustling streets. Apart from the sounds of construction, conversation, fast walkers and beeping crosswalk signals – there is an entirely different element to the sounds of UConn.

Most people you walk past on a daily basis probably have headphones in their ears pouring out music unique to their taste and mood – creating an entirely individualized experience for them. We’ve all got our music preferences and special songs that help us thrive during the daily grind and push through when caffeine or power naps don’t seem to do the trick.

Speaking to a few UConn students on their own music preferences, we first caught up with Sathia Diaz, a sixth-semester anthropology and global health major, who said the song he’s been listening to the most lately has been “Trill Friends” by Erykah Badu, which is a remix of “Real Friends” by Kanye West. “It’s a lot more soulful in my opinion. It still gets that same emotional rawness that Kanye’s version has,” Diaz said.

Diaz described his overall song collection as raw, with a lot of music that brings honesty to it. “I like to listen to music that there’s no filter on, that, you know, the artist is looking into themselves…and not altering that in any way,” Diaz said.

The main element in music that Diaz looks for is authenticity. “If I can’t feel the emotion of someone’s words – that it’s something that they have really experienced – I can’t get into the music,” Diaz said. His guilty pleasure goes to Lil B The BasedGod, for he owns every single one of his mix tapes. 

As the reason to why Diaz listens to music, he said, “Music propels me forward, if it wasn’t for music I’d be in my room right now sleeping.” 

We also spoke to Jaclyn Paride, a sixth-semester business and psychology major. Recently, she has been really into Phil Collins and 80s music in general saying, “I have a very old taste in music.”

“I like '80s music because it’s always very upbeat and it lightens the mood—especially if you’re having a tough week with exams,” Paride. As for her guilty pleasure, she emphasized and reminded us of her immense love for all things Phil Collins and '80s. 

For Paride, college can get stressful and music is an outlet to keep a level head. “Music is a way to escape all the stress that you have from college life and it kind of brings you form class to class. It brings you through your exams and it helps.”

Lastly, we spoke to Jordan Williams, a sixth-semester allied health science major, who’s taste is truly out of the mainstream, and even out of the country. For quite some time Williams has been listening to a lot of Chronixx, a Jamaican roots reggae artist from Spanish Town. Williams describes Chronixx’s sound as a mixture between hip-hop, reggae and dance. 

“I don’t share a lot of common interest when it comes to music – when it comes to other Americans – just because I grew up with 80s, 90s dance reggae type music,” Williams said. He looks to Chronixx’s music to lift him up and give him insight on a daily basis. “It gives me a sense of balance just because of the message – he’s a Rasta. Rastas have a lot of wisdom. The message is always positivity, love, pride—so I get empowered by his message specifically, and that type of music.”

Williams experiences different thoughts and emotions evoked by different types of music. “The biggest thing music is, generally, is a stimulant. So I can listen to a song, listen to the lyrics or a melody and it’ll make me feel a certain type of way – make me feel good, make me feel empowered. I could listen to another song, maybe some Kendrick (Lamar), and it will make me go into deep contemplation of the social disparities of, you know, blacks and whites in America.”

Williams was brave enough to admit that his guilty pleasure is anime openings, such as ones from the show Naruto. In terms of why he has a love for music and why others do as well, Williams said, “It just speaks to you. It’s literally someone pouring their soul into music. Showing you their soul through the art.”

Diler Haji contributed reporting.


Brett Steinberg is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at brett.steinberg@uconn.edu. He tweets @officialbrett.