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The study investigated on the impact of worship music on the 21st century African church (a case study of Akwanga LGA of Nasarawa state). The research design adopted for the study is a descriptive method, the instrument used to gather information for the study was questionnaire, fifty (50) questionnaires containing twenty items and were formulated by the researchers, it was distributed to fifty (50) respondents which comprises members of African church in Akwanga LGA of Nasarawa state and was collected back for analysis. Data gathered were analyzed using simple percentage. With regards to the findings of this study, we therefore recommend that Medical practitioners and music therapists should improve their practices by considering the cultural sensibilities of their clients and collaborating with researchers to better care for the patient and government should consider the churches in terms of the impact of music on the 21st African Churches. .





  • Background of the Study

Music has been used throughout human history to express and affect human emotion. In biblical accounts, King Saul was reportedly soothed by David’s harp music, and the ancient Greeks expressed thoughts about music having healing effects as well. Many cultures are steeped in musical traditions. It can change mood, have stimulant or sedative effects, and alter physiological processes such as heart rate and breathing. The apparent health benefits of music to patients in Veterans Administration hospitals following World War II led to it being studied and formalized as a complementary healing practice. Musician were hired to continue working in the hospitals (Alperson, 2004).Degrees in music therapy became available in the late 1940s, and in 1950, the first professional association of music therapists was formed in the United States. The National Association of Music Therapy merged with the American Association of Music Therapy in 1998 to become the American Music Therapy Association. (AMTA, 2004)

According to Austin (2004), music therapy is often defined as a profession and practice concerned with treatment. Systematic (and predictable) interventions by the music therapist in people’s lives isemphasized. Well established areas of such practices occur within special education and neurological rehabilitation, music psychotherapy, recreational use of music, teaching self-care strategies for maintaining relaxation and stress reduction, community music therapy as well as music administered within medical settings to influence physical health. (Thaut, et. al., 2005)

Music therapy is a technique of complementary medicine that uses music prescribed in a skilled manner by trained therapists. Programs are designed to help patients overcome physical, emotional, intellectual and social challenges. Applications range from improving the wellbeing of geriatric patients in nursing homes to lowering the stress level and pain of women in labor. Music therapy is used in many settings, including schools, rehabilitation centres, hospitals, hospice, nursing homes, community centers, and sometimes even in the home (Wade, 2004).

Music can be an effective tool for the mentally or emotionally ill. Autism is one disorder that has been particularly researched. Music therapy has enabled some autistic children to relate to others and have improved learning skills. Substance abuse, schizophrenia, paranoia, and disorders of personality, anxiety, and effect are all conditions that may be benefited by music therapy. In these groups, participation and social interaction are promoted through music. Reality orientation is improved. Patients are helped to develop coping skills, reduce stress, and express their feelings. (Wallace, 2004).

Pain, anxiety, and depression are major concerns with patients who are terminally ill, whether they are in hospice or not. Music can provide some relief from pain, through release of endorphins and promotion of relaxation. It can also provide an opportunity for the patient to reminisce and talk about the fears that are associated with death and dying. Music may help regulate the rapid breathing of patient who is anxious, and soothe the mind.

Since antiquity, music has been an important sociocultural activity evident in virtually all
human societies, regardless of social, political, or economic status. Although music has long
been used in various ancient cultural traditions as a form of healing, its use in modern treatment
modalities as music therapy has only recently become of interest to medical professionals in the
last few decades. Music therapy as an allied health profession grew from the demand for
rehabilitation programs for World War 2 survivors in the early 1940s and was officially
established in 1950 with the formation of the National Association for Music Therapy (NAMT) (1969) in the United States (Chiang 2008). Therefore, the study is to investigate the impact of music on the 21st century African church (a case study of Nasarawa state)



  • Statement of the Problems

How the music therapy profession accomplishes its rehabilitative goals seems to be one of the best kept secrets in today’s health-care system. Music’s uses are common and its effects are subtle, so much so that ascribing the positive results of music as a therapeutic regimen is often a concern for those in the field. However, studies involvingclinical observations have shown that today’s music therapy profession is successful inreaching patients (Hillecke, Nickel, and Bolay, 2007). Though music therapists can often explain when success is reached, there are many unanswered questions as to howand why music therapy works.

There are several misconceptions about the practice of music therapy. One is that the client has to have some particular musical ability to benefit from music therapy.Patients do not need to have any innate musical talent, nor do they need any prior training in the musical arts. Another misconception is that there is one particular style of music that is more therapeutic than all the rest; this is not the case. However, some musicalstyles do lend themselves better to certain rehabilitative tasks, e.g. physical therapy.

Furthermore, despite popular belief, a client does not need to have an intimate associationto the music that is used in therapy; although a personal connection can at times be usefulin eliciting a response (Davis, Gfeller, and Thaut, 2004).

  • Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to:

  • Examine the therapeutic effects of worship music on human mental health
  • Investigate physical and psychological effect of worship music on psychiatric patients
  • Determine the appropriate music therapy for psychiatric patients.


  • Research Questions
  • What are the effects of music therapy on human mental health?
  • What are the physical and psychological effect of music on human mental health?
  • What are the appropriate music therapy for patients in psychiatric hospitals?


  • Significance of the Study

Music is used to form a relationship with the patient. The music therapist sets goals on an individual basis, depending on the reasons for treatment, and selects specific activities and exercises to help the patient progress. Objectives may include development of communication, cognitive, motor, emotional and social skills. Some of the techniques used to achieve this are singing, listening, instrumental music, composition, creative movement, guided imagery and other method and appropriate. Other disciplines may be integrated as well, such as dance, art, and psychology. Patients may develop musical abilities as a result of therapy, but this is not a major concern. The primary aim is to improve the patient’s ability to function well.

  • Scope of the Study

This study is limited to the therapeutic effects of country music on human health. This study concentrates on examining the impact of music on the 21st century African church (a case study of Akwanga LGA of Nasarawa state).

  • Definition of Terms

Therapeutic: relating to the healing of disease. The branch of medicine concerned with the treatment of disease and the action of remedial agents.

Effect: a change that is a result or consequence of an action or other cause.

Country: country is a region that is identified as a distinct national entity in political geography.

Music: is an art form and cultural activity whose medium is sound organized in time. The common elements of music are pitch (which governs melody and harmony), rhythm (and its associated concepts tempometer, and articulation), dynamics (loudness and softness), and the sonic qualities of timbre and texture (which are sometimes termed the “color” of a musical sound).

Human: relating to or characteristic of people or human beings. A human being, especially a person as distinguished from an animal or (in science fiction) an alien.

Health: is the level of functional and metabolic efficiency of a living organism. In humans it is the ability of individuals or communities to adapt and self-manage when facing physical, mental, psychological and social changes with environment.


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