Music has, and always will be, a way to connect people and music festivals have been doing that for a long time.  Whether you’re from the U.K or America or even Australia, no matter where you’re from or your background, music will always be something to connect people.

Oticon, a company looking out for the younger generation and how best to help future generations, completed a survey in the middle of June 2019 about the original Woodstock 1969 generation and how their hearing is now after being fans of such loud of music from a young age such as The Who and others who played that festival.

When we go to gigs it’s easy to run to the barrier and stay there the entire time, even with the speakers being so close, and it’s easy to stay at the back and watch others but 70% of the Woodstock generation told Oticon that they can’t hear rock ‘n’ roll music like they used to because of hearing loss.

Because of the hearing loss, many people who took the survey claimed that they have difficulty understanding what’s being said in loud environments and it impacts their relationships with family and friends.

Credit – Woodstock 1969

Music is what brings people together socially as well, it’s currently festival season and being at a festival, the main thing people talk about is the music, were a certain band good or bad for example.  41% of the Woodstock generation explained that the hearing loss negatively impacts their ability to participate in certain social activities/gatherings and this can have a negative impact on mental health as the years go on.

Because of these negative impacts we need to make sure that we take care of our hearing during festivals and gigs.  Help Musicians UK is one of many companies trying to spread the awareness of this type of hearing loss and mental health issues from festival goers to music industry professionals. 

“The survey results demonstrate the far-reaching consequences of loud music listening on hearing health,” says Oticon president Gary Rosenblum. “That’s an important message for young people today. We [now] know the long-term effects of noise on hearing health and the importance of protecting hearing to maintain the ability to enjoy music and conversation.”

So, what does this mean for the younger generation?  Well, even though the survey was conducted in the U.S and was aimed between 65-80-year olds, it still applies to what people are doing today.  An example being Glastonbury and that for each headliner you’re looking at 100,000 people in the crowd at any point during the artist’s set.  That is large amount of people and a large amount of damage that can do to your hearing.

Although this survey is just looking at the unintended consequences of Woodstock, it’s also giving an interesting look into what could be the next set of the hearing loss generation.

To look at the full findings of this survey you can read an article by IQ Magazine and read the information provided by Oticon’s website.

Oticon’s website: https://www.oticon.com/your-hearing/getting-help/the-woodstock-generation-and-hearing-loss

IQ Magazine Article: https://www.iq-mag.net/2019/08/hearing-loss-rife-among-woodstock-gen-music-lovers/#.XVEcR5NKhbV