Three (3) Smart Issues About Music

Every now and then someone comes up with the most ‘zany, wacky, and weird reasons for why we do the things we do. I was reading earlier today and just had to share it with you.

The main reason for my interest is multi-fold: I love music and I am a musican; I love linguistics and the study of language; therefore, reading something that deals with both was really cool. It’s called:

3 Smart Things About Music

1- The pitches in musical scales are likely derived from language. Turns out, aspects of spoken English and Mandarin correlate to the intervals between notes in a chromatic scale (the black and white piano keys in an octave). Is it music we love or the sound of our own voices?

2-  When musicians improvise, the lateral prefrontal areas of their brains – responsible for planning and self-censorship – basically turn off. Meanwhile, the medial prefrontal cortex – linked to self-expression and activities like telling a story about yourself – lights up.

3-  Getting “Eye of the Tiger” stuck in your head is the result of a glitch in your auditory cortex. This part of your brain processes sounds and stores them for later recall. It powers up and can start crooning uncontrollably after hearing just a few notes of a familiar tune. Want it to stop? Listen to the whole song or do some math.

Of the first part, very early on in music I learned that the human voice is the perfectly tuned instrument in the history of humankind. How many people go and enjoy the opera without knowing the language, yet have tears streaming down their faces?

Secondly, for many years many from Timothy Leary to Dr. Phil have alleged that there are portions within the brain that are so creative, they may be uncontrolable at times.

Finally, I don’t know how much of the ‘glitch’ theory works for me; however, the notion of ‘crooning’ I have no doubt is true. Some call them jingles (commercially), slogans with music backgrounds, in fact, many of this is planned by many producers and song writers. I don’t buy the idea of working through the entire song insofar as for me, it just makes me want to do it again.

And the doing math part…makes perfectly good sense for me. Stay tuned and I tell you why!

3 Smart Things About Music hat tip to Wired Magazine

More later

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