At a SXSW panel discussion, founder of Slacker Radio Jim Cady said that Internet radio algorithms often fail because taste in music often has more to do with an emotional memory than the sound itself. Someone may like a band because it was playing at an important moment and hate another that sounds very similar.
Cady was speaking of lucid people. But this moving video of a man in a nursing home listening to the songs of his youth that has been making its way around the 'net lately shows that the effects can be far more primal. The man in question suffers from advanced dementia, but temporarily snaps back after listening to some of his favorite tunes.
It is a clip from a new documentary called Alive Inside, which set out to investigate the connections between music and memory, and how effective music may be as therapy.
The full film will be premiering next week at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City.