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What Does Your Musical Taste Say About Your Intelligence?

Lil Wayne / Sufjan Stevens
Kevin Winter/Scott Wintrow, Getty Images

A graduate student at Caltech had an idea, one that he expressed in a sentence that he obviously didn’t read aloud to himself before publishing on his personal website:

I’ve listened to artists who after listening to I thought to myself “Wow… loving this rubbish says a lot about someone and how much they got going on in their head.

This person, who later defines himself as a “scientist,” used Facebook “likes” and SAT scores to put together a chart implying a correlation between intelligence and musical taste. The results — while to be taken with a shaker of salt — are funny in a, “That’s what I thought,” sort of way.

Maybe one might expect fans of certain music to show up on the low side of the scale, but how do you explain the lofty position of the Counting Crows? And while Beethoven is listed as being a favorite among the supposed intellectual elite, classical music in general charts pretty low. And do Relient K really have enough Facebook likes to even earn a spot on this chart?

Perhaps the “science” here is flawed to the point of being as scientific as alchemy or divining rods. Or maybe relying solely on standardized tests — tests that have been accused of favoring a specific socio-economic class to the detriment of other classes — is bound to confirm the assumptions of someone who comes from that very same favored class.

Then again, maybe we think too much.

Either way, take a look at the chart below and find out where you fall, intellectually:

Next: Five More Songs Musicians Should Probably Apologize For (Like James Blunt Did)

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