*THE SCIENCE OF MUSIC*
So..We all have that one favorite song that we listen to over and over again and don't get tired of it no matter how many times we have heard it. Well today we are going to take a closer look at music and sounds. Does our enjoyment of music or our ability to find a sequence of sounds emotionally affecting have some neurological basis? Is music of any truly practical use, or is it simply baggage that got carried along as we evolved other more obviously useful adaptations? The brain’s ability to absorb and make sense of music is highly complex and far more effective than even a computer’s capacity to identify and process it. But questions about how exactly the brain takes in organized sound still remain: Why does it make us feel the way we do, like for example why does it make us cry or make us dance to a point of non stop? Some people may feel more uplifted when they listen to classical music or opera, just like myself but then others don’t get the same high when listening to Bach or Beethoven or Puccini.
Music can be defined as organized sound comprising the following structural elements: pitch, timbre, key, harmony, loudness (Amp), rhythm, meter, and tempo. Many of the researchers believe music was important to human evolution in various ways, from providing babies with a playful way to learn language, to aiding the memorization of knowledge or history, or even helping to stay awake around a bonfire while on watch for predators or even relax you when you are on a long road trip. And because we like repetition, our brains are constantly predicting what will happen next based on a pattern like the beat of a song. This is how we end up tapping our toes or dancing.
So as we all know that sound is produced by vibrating air molecules connecting with the eardrum at varying frequencies and velocities which is the pretty much Amplitude. The process starts with the brain’s primary auditory cortex receiving a signal from the eardrum/inner ear which immediately activates our cerebellum. It contributes to coordination, precision, and accurate timing of movements. The ear and the primitive brain are known collectively as the low-level processing units. The main feature is extraction which allows the brain to start analyzing the sounds, breaking down the sensory stimulus into pitch, timbre, reverberant environment, tone durations, and onset times of different notes.
Ok sooo after that the cerebellum has broken down the initial sensory stimulus it passes the signal to the thalamus which interrogates the signals for any signs of danger. It does this by communicating with the hippocampus, the brain’s memory center, for stored historical sound/danger associations. The visual cortex's response may also be responsible for the experience of synesthesia or seeing the colors of sounds, that many experience.
“Music can increase one’s libido,” said Curtis Levang, PhD, a Minneapolis area clinical psychologist and licensed marriage and family therapist. Like music, sex has a big an emotional side to it as it does a physical aspect, Dr. Hong said. That’s why, if you are a man with low testosterone who needs to boost his sex drive, you should try listening to music, advised Hong.
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The next level of music!
The dopamine rush that we get, which is the same we feel when eating a nourishing meal or having intercourse, produces that indescribable feeling of "the chills" when we listen to a beautiful section of music. Perhaps the strongest reason that people continue to return to music is its effect on memory. Since memories are not stored in the brain in a centralized location but are instead spread throughout neurological pathways, music's ability to activate such large areas of our brain serves as a strong stimulus for recovering memories. In fact let me says this, music can be so effective at stimulating memories, it's sometimes used to help patients living with Alzheimer's disease and dementia grasp portions of their former selves and how their lives were. A certain part in a music video or a certain lyric in a song can trigger a strong memory/flashback. It is said that when you are in stressful situation, listening to relaxing classical music such as Mozart's symphonies or bach, or even soothing opera it will relax the mind and bring down blood pressure and also help your muscles to relax when you are at the gym and listen to your music on your device.
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Music and the daily life!
Music and the baby
Here's a cool thing for everyone out there. Did you know that it's so important that during parenthood or even after birth to expose your child to the world of music. Infants can understand musical patterns prior to understanding words. In essence, music allows your infant to practice “listening ahead” and anticipating what will come next based on her prior experience. The inner ear is fully developed in the last trimester of pregnancy. By 26 weeks, most respond with an increase in heart rate to sound stimulation.
There's a thing called the "Mozart experience" or Mozart effect" under this effect, by playing classical music you provide your infant sensory stimulation that enhances his/her central nervous system development. When you sing to your infant face to face, he/she can associate oral movements with sound perception and can gain other details through your facial expressions. This helps them learn critical communication skills. There was a study conducted that showed after exposure to music in the prenatal period seemed to be linked to increased attention, more sound imitation and earlier vocalization in the baby. It is of course, when the baby is growing in the mother's body that the majority of brain development occurs. The idea behind research into music exposure during the pregnancy is designed to enhance the development of the brain with appropriate stimuli.
Listen to the songs :)
There are 3 different types of songs linked below:
Celine Dion - Loved Me Back To Life
Journey - Don't Stop Believing
O Mio Babbino Caro - Maria Callas
On the comment section of this article you are more than free to share your feelings on each of these songs and how they made you feel through out listening to them.
Celine Dion - Loved Me Back To Life - CLASSICAL
Besides being a background or a mood enhancer, music can also be a person’s companion. Whatever method you choose, making music part of your lifestyle is a simple yet powerful way to enhance your health and your life.
So for those who are expecting or are parents already, the amniotic fluid conducts sound well, playing music in the background as you go about your day works too.
Congrats if you are parent! And again I hope that this article helped a little with understanding music and the effect of it on our body and brain.
O Mio Babbino Caro -Maria Callas - OPERA
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Pitbull - Fireball ft. John Ryan - POP
Vote for your music!
What genre do you listen to the most?
Journey - Don't Stop Believing -CLASSICAL ROCK
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© 2015 Mahsa S