Okay, so now that we've established that the badger folk (or Melinae sapien, if you want to be politically correct) are trading their ore to the humans for cat food. Now we need to determine what kind of culture exchange they'll have.

To look at one particular issue, what kind of human music would badger folk prefer? Of course, individual badger folk will have different preferences, but in a similar way that Americans liked British Rock best back in the day, badger folk will like a specific type of human music best.

We can assume that badger folk have similar musical preferences to that of real badgers.

(Note: If you are questioning the tag, see Can hard-science apply to social sciences and other academic fields? and Is the use of the [Hard-Science] tag acceptable in questions with a non-hard premise?)

(Note: This isn't opinion based. I'm asking for answers based on zoomusicology (or other fields), not opinion based-answers.)

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    $\begingroup$ To those that are voting to close, please include some discussion in the comments as to why you believe it should be closed. I have some guesses, but I have a feeling this may be contentious enough to warrant discussion rather than drive-by closes. $\endgroup$
    – Cort Ammon
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 3:29
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    $\begingroup$ It is possible find related scientific publications - e.g. relative pitch perception in ferrets (another mustelid): scitation.aip.org/content/asa/journal/jasa/127/3/10.1121/… - although with chimeric folk, you can always import abilities and cultural influences from the fantasy human side. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 10:48
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    $\begingroup$ @pyrulez: The reason this is [opinion based] is because if you replace the word 'badger' in the question with the word 'human' you can't get a non-opinion based answer despite there being a wealth of research papers on not only human hearing, but also neurological and physiological effects of various kinds of music. If you move the problem to badgers, where even less is known, it doesn't remove the opinion part of the question.. $\endgroup$
    – Joe Bloggs
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 14:53
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    $\begingroup$ It seems to me that one could answer this in a generalized format by looking at 1) the frequencies badgers hear at, and 2) changes to hearing in mammals for creatures that primarily live underground. At the very least, there should be a potential hard-science answer for what human music badgers will not like. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 15:23
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    $\begingroup$ Don't you mean "what kind of music do badger folk dig?" $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 21:01

6 Answers 6


Let's approach it the way we can (generalize) human music. I can find nothing on badger behavior towards music, so this is all just speculation. Also, badger humans don't exist (yet?).


Badgers live in underground dwelling units that are tightly knit. This could suggest a large interest in community and cooperation in tough times and good. This could also suggest a little bit less on the bass, because you'd be shaking dirt all over the place.


Diet of a badger is largely known to eat bugs to small mammals. This helps me in no way.


Mr. Badger was a grumpy, but wise character who pointed out the realities of the world to an arguably naive character in the Wind in the Willows.


Badgers are primarily found in North America, Britain, and Ireland, but can be found in many other places.


I am guessing that Badger-People might feel marginalized from both human and badger populations.

From those five generalizations, I would put their favorite to be Alt-Country.

Brit/US Indie [Geography] music with a realist, sometimes sad slant [Mr Badger]; a bit of alternative feel [Society], a hint of bluegrass [Diet], a social component [Dwelling], and not too much bass [underground Dwelling].

While it is not my favorite music, but I'd call it Indie/Alt/Country/Bluegrass. That is broad speculation.

  • $\begingroup$ Technically they aren't badger humans. It's a case of convergent evolution. (Don't worry though; badger folk accidently call us monkey badgers sometimes as well.) $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 13:04
  • $\begingroup$ @PyRulez - okay, well I kind of still stick by my answer.. I think they'd like that music video, based on their inherited nature. $\endgroup$
    – Mikey
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 19:11

I will start by adding a link to the audio frequency ranges of some animals . Although the badger is not present in the list provided at the bottom of the above link , a ferrets frequency range is provided. Since the badger is closely related to a ferret , we can assume that the badgers audio frequency lies between 16 and 44,000 Hz. A human beings range is 64-23,000 Hz.

So a badger can pick up on wider spectrum of frequencies than humans. Most music genres humans enjoy or recognise fall into the audio spectrum they can identify , so it is probable that badgers will enjoy the same , also you might invent a new genre that falls into the badgers spectrum.

As far as the question is concerned , with their level of sophistication it would be unfair to generalise a particular genre for the whole species. They might not be huge fans of music that may that may hamper their burrows which is completely logical.

My guess is they will invent new genres like humans did , I guess this too is a part of evolving.

  • $\begingroup$ This doesn't really answer the question, "What kind of human music do badger-folk like?" $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 12, 2018 at 21:48

I would expect that any music with synthetically added room effects would be very bothersome for them. Living in tunnels, they would be quickly aware of what sounds carry through a tunnel and which ones do not. Our human tendency to "just add some reverb" to make it sound better would be appalling to them in the same way it hurts the eye to see a really garish green and red image, or the feeling of fingernails down a chalk board. Most modern pop would be impossible to listen to (for the badgers I mean...)

The real badger is a solitary creature, which would certainly have an effect on the kind of music they like. I think it could have any one of a number of effects, but I'd peg the most likely to be a preference for music with many instruments playing together, as such music might be a symbol differentiating them from their solitary lesser kin.

Between these, I would say classical orchestral music would be most preferable to them.


I'm guessing the badgerfolk don't natively speak the human language? They probably don't get much out of lyrics, then.

They may not even be able to read human emotions. A human might think a song was "sad" or "melancholy", but a badger might not recognize that those intonations mean sadness.

Badgerfolk probably prefer instrumental music (or classical music, as AndreiROM said), because that music is designed to be interesting even without lyrics.

I'm unsure if the music trade is possible, though. Checking your other questions, this is a fantasy world, and the technology level is "early 1800s". The phonograph wasn't invented until 1877, and even after that it would take several years for the technology to be widespread enough to make music for trade.

If badgerfolk like human music, the way they listen to it is the way everyone else does at that time: they go find a tavern, buy a drink, and listen to whatever the bard wants to sing.


what kind of human music would badger folk prefer

They would like music that they could sing themselves and join in with. If you listen to these badger vocalisations - https://youtu.be/b4lpFjHsGLo - you will realised they have high-pitched voices so songs by the Chipmunks would be suitable https://youtu.be/-RP19fnff_c


They would be fascinated by human music that seemed at least superficially to be about badgers:

  1. The White Stripes


  1. Ebony and Ivory by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder


  1. Badger badger badger by Brian May



This is what envision when I think "what music would play in the town square of a badger folk village?" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bzziAv9o4w

  • $\begingroup$ This does not meet the requirements of the hard-science tag. $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Commented Nov 11, 2016 at 9:37

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