music role and development of human resosurces


Humans are the invaluable (very useful) but often neglected resources. They are the pivot upon which all aspects of development revolve because they can use their brains to manipulate their environments to bring about development.

The Human Resources Development (HRD) is concerned with the learning and enhancement of individuals, organizations, communities, nations and ultimately of the entire world. In developing humans worldwide, there is need for the inclusion of political, social, environmental, cultural, musical as well as spiritual development.

According to Michael (2000) The Human Resources of a nation are usually determined by the state of it’s development, and human development resources are explained from the perceptive of ‘ends’ or products of development as centered with the ‘means’ of development.

Human Development can be measured in terms of a number of indices which include health, education, food and nutrition, consumption patterns, income, employment, poverty, population, environment trends and social-political fabrics (Michael 2000).


Music is one of the essential elements of human Resources Development of sociological, economic and cultural issues to impact enrichment of humans. It is successful and necessary resource to explore to implement HRD programme. Music and society have always been intimately related. Music reflects and creates social conditions including factors that facilitated social changes. The development of recording techniques has revolutionalized the extent to which most people have access to music. All kinds of music are available to most people 24 hours a day, showing the need for music in people’s lives and equally the role it plays in human development.

Many authors defined music from different ways viz. Glennon (1980) in Igboabuchi & Denco (1998) defined music as expression of sound or the expression of thought and feeling in an aesthetic form. While Obicheta (2010) defined music from three perspectives:

1. As “a succession of organized sound that is pleasing to the ear”. For any sound to be qualified as music, it must come in close succession. It has to be definite, equal and regular. Moreover, it has to be organized and pleasant to the ear. Any sound that is not organized is noise. So noise is an unorganized sound that is unpleasant to the ear.

2. As a universal language of the soul. It has no language barrier. Both young and old, understand, enjoy and appreciate good music. People play music; sing song, written in languages other than their own.

3. As a sacred art, means it can be used in holy places for worship in churches, temples, mosque, shrine etc.

Obicheta (2010) noted three major groups of music. These are: 1) song 2) dance music and 3) instrumental music.

1. Song Music

It can also be called vocal music. Song is classified into sacred and secular music

Sacred music: is holy song used for worship e.g. hymns, chants, canticles, anthems.

Secular music: it is worldly and material and cannot be used inside the church because they are not religious or spiritual. Examples love songs, song of insult, song of lament, folk songs, operas (songs used in dance).

2. Dance music

These are series of movement and steps in time with music. It uses voice, instruments, costume and other things as required by the group.

3. Instrumental music

It does not require human voice. It is purely meant for instruments.

Kinds of Music

Various kinds of music are:

1. Art music: this is musical work & a trained musician e.g. Afufu Nmoo by Sam Ojukwu, Anambra state anthem by Prof. Dan Agu, etc.

2. Martial or military music: is the music played by armed forces like Army, Navy, Police, Air force during special occasions like parade military ceremonies.

3. Folk music: it is the traditional music of people handed down from generation to generation by oral tradition e.g. folk songs, moonlight songs.

4. Commercial Music: music that is virtually or traditionally bound for special families or special occasions e.g. Ufie music for Ozo title in Igbo land, Abia music in Igbo land for traditional burial, Agbala music for worship of gods and goddesses in shrines. Kakaki music to announce the arrival of the Emir in Hausa, Njala chant for hunting in Yoruba land. Igba Eze for Ofala festival in Igbo land.

5. Social music: this is the common music in the society; it is worldly or material with no law binding it and has freedom of performance. Examples are moonlight music, Atilogwu music, Erico dance, Egedege music etc.

Uses of Music

People can use music for the following events:

(1) Entertainment (2) Works (3) Pleasure (4) Funerals (5) Rituals (6) Worship (7) Ceremonies (8) Festivals (9) Healing (10) Advertisement (11) Parade (12) Hunting (13) Sensitization (14) Mobilization. (15) Families use music for early Morning Prayer and bed time at night.


Music is a very powerful medium at the level of social groups through which it influences the Human Development, these are:

1. It facilitates communication which goes beyond words.

2. It enables meaning to be shared.

3. Music promotes the development and maintenance of individual, groups, cultural and national identities.

4. Music can also act therapeutically in promoting relaxation, alleviating anxiety and pain. Feierabend (2008) mentioned that the therapeutic used of music have been explored extensively, with particular groups of patriots, the elderly, those with brain damage and those with persistent pain. It has also been used to promote appropriate behavior in vulnerable groups and enhance the quality of life of those who cannot be helped medically.

5. Power of music influences consumers purchasing behavior because it is easy to remember the products names associated with music, for this demand for music is likely to continue to increase and enhance the music industries to constitute a major element of the economic of many countries which contribute for HRD.

6. Music is powerful at the individual’s level of development because it can induce multiple responses which include physiological, movement, mood, emotional, cognitive and behavioural responses.

7. Music enhances human development in the early years. This is evident in stimulating infants in such a way as to promote their well-being. The early interaction between mother and child has essentially musical quality which assists in the development of communication skills. E.g. mothers use lullaby to send their children asleep.

8. Music increases self-esteem and promote the development of a young of social and transferable skills in individuals. E.g. early involvement of children in music can help them develop socially and they can learn skills of playing musical instruments.

9. Music manipulates moods, alleviate the burdens of tedious tasks and create environments appropriate for particular social events.

10.Music encourages individuals to use music to optimize their sense of well-being.

11.Music enhances our self presentation and promotes our development.

12.Music equally earns many youth’s full time jobs or employment opportunities, and the development of their talents.

13.It enhances cognitive and emotional development of an individual.

14.If those taken into captive (Refugees) could sing and share their experiences of their music while in another man’s land, they would continue to be united and connected with their culture until the time that they would once again experience freedom.

15.People can show the celebration of their freedom by singing the folk songs of their country. Singing and listening to the National Anthem of a nation, one can conclude that music can transmit a culture and hold people together.

16.Uses of music are common in our schools for every morning assembly by primary school pupils and secondary school students.

Music has become an integral part of our everyday lives in a way which would have been unthinkable. Since there is long explosion in people’s listening and making music in our society, there is need to set up a development agency like in other countries for participatory music making in the society called sound sense. It will act as a source of opportunities for the exchange of ideas in relation to all aspects of community music.


The role of music in Human Resources Development indicated that music can play great part in all round human development, both in children and adults due to its multi-dimensional influences on human development both physiological, sociological, emotion, and political etc. Again people of all works of life use music for different purposes at one time or the other. So, if music can create these impacts in all phases of human development, there is need for all people of ages to listen to music and been played by all and Sunday.


Feirrabend (2008). http://musicmagic.wordpresscom/2008/07/10/music-in-society/

Igboabuchi & Denco (1998). Lincel Publishers Onitsha.

Michael (2000). George Washington University, USA.

Obicheta (2010). Jenison Publishing Company.

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