Dimmed lights, Egyptian cotton sheets, candles, and a baby-making playlist are sure necessities for setting the mood. Now, science has provided us with a big tip for better love-making: a sex-oriented music playlist. Listening to music, from Marvin Gaye to the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, can be more sexually arousing than actual foreplay or even sex, according to a study commissioned by Spotify and performed by music psychologist Dr. Daniel Mullensiefen of the University of London.

Sex and music are both reliant on rhythm. It's natural listening to music would heighten our sexual experience. The way we make love or our behavior in an intimate setting can reflect the type of music we enjoy and are inspired by.

"People use this music to not only communicate their intentions in a romantic situation but to directly alter the mood during an encounter,” Mullensiefen said in the press release.

Mullensiefen and Spotify’s "Science Behind the Song" study sought to explore the relationship between music, romance, seduction, and what songs can be the soundtrack to your sex life. A total of 2,000 people aged between 18 and 91 years old, with an almost equal gender split, were recruited for the study to rank which songs are “better than sex.” Researchers believe this can determine the importance of music to our love lives.

The findings revealed what is on our seduction playlist is more important than what’s underneath our clothes when it comes boosting your sex life. Over 40 percent of the participants felt that the music they listened to during sex was more likely to turn them on than the touch or feel of their partner. This was driven by the personal connection these participants had to the song of their choice.

The most arousing music to listen to while twisting the sheets was anything from the iconic classic 80s film Dirty Dancing, Marvin Gaye’s "Sexual Healing," and Ravel’s "Bolero." The top songs on the list are a reflection what we’ve associated with love from childhood, previous experiences, and memories. “The fact that Dirty Dancing has come top on the list of the best tracks to play during sex for both men and women is due to the fact that most people have a good knowledge of songs that represent romance, and these tend to be from cultural references such as film.”

The best tracks for seduction in the bedroom were found to share similar qualities, including a greater dynamic range, more use of the high chest voice, more raspiness in the voice, and less use of vocal vibrato. This can be seen in Marvin Gaye’s popular tracks, like "Sexual Healing" and "Let’s Get It On." The Gaye songs are smooth and possess an emotional quality that fits well with his voice, which conveys passion and emotion.

It’s no surprise the participants found music arousing in the bedroom. A 2011 study found music releases dopamine, which is the same neurotransmitter that’s responsible for sexual pleasure. However, music does not satisfy any particular biological need in the same way sex and other dopamine-producing activities such as eating or exercising does. Rather it serves as an “aesthetic or intellectual reward,” which may be why music can heighten sexual experiences.

Sex, just like music, possesses rhythmic qualities that are accompanied by sound. They are both rhythmic and emotional. This is why pleasure is typically felt when a partner engages in heavy breathing and moaning during sex.

Earlier this year, Billboard, Spotify, and Echo Nest provided a much more recent sexy sex songs playlist to roll around in bed. The playlist was put together by analyzing Spotify’s 1.1 billion playlists across 40 million users for instances of “sex” and “sexy” in the playlist title over the course of two weeks this summer. The top songs on the top 25 included Dylan Gardner’s “Let’s Get started,” Neon Trees’ “First Things First,” and Coldplay’s “Magic.”

Bedroom classics like “Let’s Get It On” still resonate well into the 21st century and may actually let you have “The Time of Your Life” in the bedroom.

Source: Benovoy M, Cooperstock JR, Longo G et al. The Rewarding Aspects of Music Listening Are Related to Degree of Emotional Arousal. PLOS ONE. 2009.