Warner Music Group enters first music therapy deal with MediMusic

Steven Loeb · December 15, 2023 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/57a2

The two companies will conduct research to see how patients respond to music in real-time

Music has proven to be an effective therapy tool for ailments both physical and mental: research has shown that music can change brainwave activity levels, enabling the brain to shift speeds more easily as needed, meaning music can have lasting benefits even after someone has stopped listening. Music has also been proven to reduce anxiety by up to 44%, pain by 29%, and a resulting reduction in the need for relevant drugs by 24%.

Now one of the world's largest record labels is looking to deploy its catalog as a way of helping people, as earlier this week Warner Music Group (WMG) announced a partnership with MediMusic, a start-up that says it's dispensing music as medicine to reduce anxiety and pain.

Through the partnership, MediMusic will conduct research testing in closed, randomized controlled trials in both the United States and the United Kingdon, in which they will deliver playlists from WMG’s catalogue of music to patients and sample groups in order to observe how they respond in real-time. 

In addition, the two companies will also be conducting trials in hospitals and care homes starting in the first quarter of 2024.

Founded in 2016, MediMusic use artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data about the patient to automatically create personalized 20-minute playlists, which are designed to reduce heart rate and stress hormones, like cortisol, and promote relaxation through hormones like dopamine and oxytocin.  

Users listen to the music through a streaming device called the MediBeat, while wearing a heart rate monitor on their wrist, so that MediMusic can monitor the physiological effect of a piece of music, using its AI-driven Digital Drip.

The  Digital Drip knows what that response should be; if the heart rate falls outside of the expected threshold subsequent tracks are swapped out in real-time to bring the heart rate back in line. The resulting data is captured by the Digital Drip for future use by a machine learning process to refine subsequent playlist creation.

The UK National Health Service had already conducted trials with MediMusic on people living with dementia, in which found it the service reduced the heart rate in anxious dementia patients by 25%. MediMusic has also been piloted in care homes in the UK, including Orchard Court Care Home in Brigg, North Lincolnshire for its 29 residents.

For WMG, this is its first music therapy deal; previously the company has secured deals with Equinox, Peloton, and Apple Fitness+.

“At WMG, we are focused on finding new ways for our artists and music to be used for good, to benefit society, and to empower an ecosystem of partners with similar goals,” Michael Baines, VP, Digital Strategy and Business Development at WMG, said in a statement.

“Together with MediMusic, we’re thrilled to explore the transformative healing power of music in their ‘music as medicine’ trials — we are just beginning to scratch the surface of what’s possible.”

(Image source: medimusic.co)

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