Abstract: This study conducts qualitative research on late adolescent digital music users aged 17–19 to explore their emotional resonance and identities in digital music consumption. The findings indicate that late adolescents are highly dependent on music, with it playing a significant role in their lives, particularly in meeting emotional needs and shaping identities. Late-adolescent digital music users seek to assert themselves through unique and unconventional music tastes. The study also uncovers the coexistence of personalization and socialization in their music-listening behaviors, dividing them into “music-experienced” and “music-socialized” groups. Regarding emotional motivation, the music-experienced group listens to music for personal empathy, while the music-socialized group seeks interpersonal emotional resonance through music-based social interaction. From a practical perspective, this study suggests that the digital music industry should focus on the emotional value generated by music and balance users’ personalization and socialization needs.
Keywords: adolescents; digital music; digital music platforms; emotional resonance; music consumption; music listeners; music preference; self-identity