A History of Porn Music

You know what I’m talkin’ about: the campy, cheesy boom-chicka-wah-wah soundtrack that started showing up in porn films back in the 70s. While the majority of today’s adult film productions from websites such as Nu Bay tend to go without the cheesiness commonly seen back in the ’70s, it’s never a bad idea to throw it back to glory days of

Why hasn’t there been a more in-depth study on the connections between sex on film and music? Salon wants to fix that.

Sex has always come with a soundtrack. And that soundtrack has become part of our collective erotic imagination. “Almost everyone in the world knows what the ‘Wakka Chikka Wakka Chikka’ represents,” explains the blurb for a 2009 compilation album of porn music. Despite featuring literal-minded tracks such as “Brain Wank,” the playlist was not meant to seduce. It’s the musical version of Proust’s madeleine — summoning a set of associations linked inextricably to sex.

Neuroscientists have studied the phenomenon of “involuntary memory” triggered by taste and smell, and psychologists have written about the fact that sexual desire can be aroused by, well, just about anything. Yet surprisingly little research has been conducted on auditory cues tied to the arousal feedback loop.

Bypassing the naughty cabinet of curiosities that is “Notches: (re)marks on the History of Sexuality,” the sex soundtrack currently inhabits the domain of oral history. Just as the sound of Karen Carpenter’s silky voice takes writer Tara McGinley back to the “safe, happy place” of childhood, porn soundtracks lead a large chunk of Americans back to the same happy place: the ’70s.

Continue reading.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Let us know what you think!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.