Music

Neurophilosophy

Category archives for Music

Learning to play a musical instrument is known to involve both structural and functional changes in the brain. Studies published in recent years have established, for example, that professional keyboard players have increased gray matter volume in motor, auditory and visual parts of the brain, and that violinists have a larger somatosensory cortical representation of…

Hendrix at Woodstock

Here’s some awesome footage of the one and only Jimi Hendrix performing at Woodstock. At around 11 minutes in, he plays the guitar with his teeth. Yes…with his teeth. And it still sounds great. Some of the hippies at the event take a much-needed dip in a lake, so the film does contain a tiny…

The funky Scientologist

Here’s Isaac Hayes performing his extremely funky rendition of Burt Bacharach’s The Look of Love.

Musicology

Over the last two months, Nature has published a series of essays about the latest scientific research into music, and now that the series is complete, it has been made available as a free PDF. Among the authors of the essays are Aniruddh D. Patel, a theoretical neurobiologist at the Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla,…

Farid al-Atrash

Here’s some superb old footage of the legendary Syrian musician Farid al-Atrash giving a virtuoso performance on the oud.

Brain wave music now a reality

This cartoon, found at Paleo-Future, accompanied a short article from the August 28th, 1949 edition of the San Antonio Light: CHICAGO, Aug. 27 – (AP) – Some day composers won’t write music, and musicians won’t play it – yet fans will enjoy it in never-before-heard perfection. The composer or artist will simply project it by…

Connectivity

My exams begin on Friday, so things are going to be pretty quite around here until around mid-May. I will post various bits and pieces over the next couple of weeks, but in the meantime, here are some interesting links that I’ve found recently: In the New York Times Magazine, Gary Marcus discusses the possibility…

The search engine optimization rap

This track, called Design Coding by The Poetic Prophet, has just been uploaded on YouTube. I thought it was hilarious the first time I saw it, and it’s still very amusing on the fourth viewing. I’m not an expert on search engine optimization, but the advice provided here is, as far as I know, accurate.

The neuroscience of jazz improvisation

One shouldn’t really need an excuse to embed this fantastic performance by Thelonious Monk, but now there is one: NIDCD researchers believe that they have identified the cognitive neural substrate of jazz improvisation. For the study, which is published in the open access journal PLoS One, Charles Lamb and Allen Braun recruited six professional jazz…

Concert music controlled by audience brainwaves

James Fung, a musician and computer engineer at the University of Toronto, has developed a program that can convert EEG recordings into music. Fung is involved in the Regenerative Brain Wave Music Project, which “explores new physiological interfaces for musical instruments.” As part of the project, he staged a concert in which the music and…