Music Marker Theory posits that music is relevant for the structuring of peer groups and that rock, urban, or dance music preferences relate to externalizing behavior. The present study tested these hypotheses, by investigating the role of music preference similarity in friendship selection and the development of externalizing behavior, while taking the effects of friends’ externalizing behavior into account. Data were used from the first three waves of the SNARE (Social Network Analysis of Risk behavior in Early adolescence) study (N = 1144; 50% boys; Mage = 12.7; SD = 0.47), including students who entered the first-year of secondary school. Two hypotheses were tested. First, adolescents were expected to select friends based both on a similarity in externalizing behavior and music genre preference. Second, a preference for rock, urban, or dance, music types was expected to predict the development of externalizing behavior, even when taking friends’ influence on externalizing behavior into account. Stochastic Actor-Based Modeling indicated that adolescents select their friends based on both externalizing behavior and highbrow music preference. Moreover, both friends’ externalizing behavior and a preference for dance music predicted the development of externalizing behavior. Intervention programs might focus on adolescents with dance music preferences.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The first author was supported by the Fulbright Scholar Program, and grant from NWO (programme Youth and Family, project number 431-09-027). The third author was supported by a grant from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) (Vernieuwingsimpuls; VENI. project number 451-10-012) during the preparation of this manuscript.
© 2017, The Author(s).