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Rob Lattin's Mad Experiment

Updated on July 18, 2013

Rob Lattin's Mad Experiment

A Test of Sanity - Using Music

I’ve come up with an experiment to use music to help determine sanity. I call it my Mad Experiment.
It takes some time to put together the music and it takes time to listen to the music and record the results. I recommend that you conduct this experiment on a willing subject rather than on yourself as you may become emotionally distraught, or even perhaps go mad.

Seriously, it’s best to conduct this on a willing subject. Generally, if you conduct this on a person who is not well versed in music, it may be more of a shock to them. On the other hand, someone who is familiar with all of the music may not be willing to continue after a couple of songs. So you may need to try this on a variety of people - young - old, male - female, musician - non-musician, music lover - music apathetic. all of this depends on how scientific you want to be or how sadistic you really are.

If you are adventurous, and don’t really want to, nor care, if this experiment is scientific or not, then by all means try it on yourself although your results will be skewed as you know the song selection in advance.

Let’s begin: After the songs are selected, the exact order of play must be arranged. The entire song must be listened to from beginning to end and it needs to be in a room with no distraction, preferably with headphones on. Have the volume at a comfortable level but do not allow the subject access to volume control or on-off switches. Do not allow the subject to hold any sharp objects except for a writing utensil. The headphones need to remain on during the entire experiment. Lights need to be low but not dark. Allow the subject to have a glass of water but no alcoholic or sugary beverages.

You will play two songs at a time consecutively. After each set, the subject answers questions on a sheet of paper. This is a double-study as you will also record, for your part, the emotional reaction of the subject during each set noting such things as change in emotion, facial expression, persperation, and body language. Sorry, I will not have time or room here for emotional reaction logging, but you can devise that yourself.

We shall cover the subject involvement part of the study here. The songs and their order will be listed and a point score for the answers follows. The subject HAS to listen to the entire song in the order selected and not be distracted. He or she has to answer each question on the sheet.

Do not verbally ask the questions after each set as the subject may attempt to get you involved in conversation and thus be depleting the integrity of the experiment.

Here we go -

Do NOT Self-experiment

It all began when I pressed "random play" and I've never been the same since.
It all began when I pressed "random play" and I've never been the same since.

The Test of Sanity

Songs need to be recorded in the order of each set and you control their play.


Set 1

  • Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen)
  • Cat’s In A Cradle (Harry Chapin)

How do you feel? (Please circle your answers)

Sad (5) Happy (10) Angry (20) Other (25)

Set 2

  • Playground In My Mind (Clint Holmes)
  • Ace of Spades (Motorhead)

Which song can you repeat the lyrics to?

Playground (5) All of Playground (10) Ace (20) Neither (25)

Set 3

  • Us and Them (Pink Floyd)
  • Those Were the Days (All In the Family TV Theme)

How do you feel?

Uneasy (5) Happy (10) Angry (20) No feeling at all (25)

Set 4

  • Eye of the Tiger (Survivor)
  • Funhouse (The Stooges feat. Iggy Pop)

How do you feel?

Uneasy (5) Uplifted (10) Angry (20) No feeling at all (25)

Set 5

  • Hanky Panky (Tommy James and the Shondells)
  • Brady Bunch Theme Song

Which song can you repeat the lyrics to? Hanky (5) Brady (10) Both (15) Neither (25)

Set 6

  • Theme from Star Trek Original Series
  • Dirt (Alice In Chains)

How do you feel? Sad (5) Happy (10) Angry (20) No feeling at all (25)

Set 7

  • American Pie (Don McLean)
  • Feelings (Morris Albert)

Which lyrics are most memorable?

Feelings (5) Pie (10) Neither (20) I’m tired (25)

Set 8

  • Walk This Way (Run DMC with Aerosmith)
  • Tiptoe Through the Tulips (Tiny Tim)

How do you feel? Uneasy (5) Confused (10) Angry (20) Happy (25)

Set 9

  • White Christmas (Bing Crosby)
  • The Munsters TV Theme

Which song makes you feel nostalgic?

Christmas (5) Munster (10) Both (20) Feelings by Morris Albert (25)

Set 10

  • I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night (The Electric Prunes)
  • How Do You Do (Mouth and McNeal)

How do you feel?

Uneasy (5) Happy (10) Angry (20) No feeling at all (25)

Set 11

  • Can’t Get Enough Of your Love, Babe (Barry White)
  • Loving You (Minnie Riperton)

How do you feel?

Slightly Stressed (5) Amorous (10) Like a caged animal (20) at peace with the world (25)

Set 12

  • On Top of the World (The Carpenters)
  • God Save The Queen (The Sex Pistols)

Do you hear any similarities between these two songs/?

No (5) Maybe (10) I’m angry (20) Yes (25)

. . .

Here's are a few bonus sets you can alternate into the mix:

Bonus Set 1

  • Stairway To Heaven (Led Zeppelin)
  • Theme from TV's Gilligan's Island

What is the difference between these two songs

no difference (5) the words were changed (10) I'm angry (20) that's only one song (25)

Bonus Set 2

  • I'm Easy (Keith Carradine)
  • Peaceful Easy Feeling (The Eagles)

How do you feel?

easy (5) uneasy (10) angry (20) don't remember (25)

Test Results

Results Score (Don’t allow the subject to view this for your own safety!)

60 to 119 points: you are normal now go home and watch TV

120 to 239 points: you are a borderline music fanatic and you listen to everything

240 to 299 points: you have serious anger issues and should not listen to anything

300 points: you are insane and probably have a desk job somewhere working for the government

And anybody who wants to repeat this experiment should be locked up immediately.

Please leave your comments and if you attempt this experiment, please note I am not liable for any brain damage caused. You do this at your own risk.

I am not a doctor nor psychiatrist, I only play music and have been going mad for the last 12 years.

TV Theme Songs To Drive You Nuts


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