Does Playing Musical Instrument Make You Smarter?

 

The future of our nation depends upon providing our children with a complete education which includes music.”

Gerald Ford.

Does Playing A Musical Instrument Make You Smarter? 

Or do only smarter people play a musical instrument?

The brain is the most amazing and complex organ in the human body. Neurologists are still trying to find out exactly how it works. 

What they do know – thanks to neuro-imaging technology – is that playing a musical instrument requires some unique mental gymnastics. Neurologists also determined that playing a musical instrument encompasses almost all areas of the brain.
The Brain And Neuro-Imaging  Technology
The more difficult the piece of music, the more adaptable the brain becomes with processing the information. That newly acquired ability can then be translated to other non-musical activities.
Perhaps this explains why musicians score higher than non-musicians in many other disciplines as well.

The question still remains, however, whether playing an instrument makes you smarter, or do only smarter people play a musical instrument?

 

Benefits Of Learning To Play A Musical Instrument

Playing a musical instrument has many benefits which can bring hours of pure delight and unforgettable memories to you and others. Among these are:

Stress reduction                                               

Increase productivity                                                         

Instill self-discipline                                                     

Develop creativity and

Boost confidence

How Playing A Musical Instrument Makes You Smarter

Heard about the Harmony ProjectBased in Los Angeles, it is a non-profit organization that provides free music education to children in poor and gang-related neighborhoods.

Young Upcoming Child Violinist

Amazingly, students from this school were defying all odds, heading directly into UCLA  and other notable universities after graduating high school.

This startling discovery by the Project founder prompted Researchers at the Northwestern University to investigate.

In their research, 44 students were tracked over a two-year period, as they learned to play an instrument. There were also before and after  IQ test as well as other measurements of success.

Results showed clear evidence of measurable changes in the brain.

Researchers concluded that these changes were caused by the students’ musical training which, in turn, allowed the students to more readily process sound.

That increased ability also translated into the students’ proficiency in reading and fluency in speaking.

Smart U.S. Presidents who also played an instrument

 

Current  US President Donald Trump tops the list of musical Presidents. Trump, I understand, plays the accordion.

 Other former musically minded Presidents of the modern era are Bill Clinton who plays the saxophone and Barak Obama who sings. 

Other Most Musical Past Presidents And Their Achievements

He was the 3rd US President who also drafted the  Declaration Of Independence.

Thomas Jefferson (1743 – 1826)  played the  Violin & Cello

 As sixth President Of The United States, he formulated the Munroe Doctrine.

John Quincy Adams (1767-1848)  played the flute.

This sixteenth President of the US issued the Emancipation Proclamation.

Abraham Lincoln (1809 – 1865) played the violin.

 As the 30th President was credited with preserving America’s old moral and economic principles.

Calvin Calvin Coolidge (1872 – 1933) played the harmonica.

President No.28 was also the creator of the League Of Nations

Woodrow Wilson (1856 – 1924) played his violin and also sang tenor

One of the most musical Presidents was Warren J. Harding (1865 -1923)

As 29th President of the USA, he organized the Citizens Cornet Band which performed at both

Warren J. Harding Playing The Tuba

Democratic and Republican Rallies.

“I played every instrument but the slide trombone and the E-flat Cornet,” he once said.

However, despite his musical acumen, he has been described as one of the worst Presidents due to the various scandals which plagued him.

 

 

Conclusion

Of course, many other famous Presidents who played musical instruments have been excluded in the interest of time and brevity.

In looking at the evidence, however, one must conclude that most of the Presidents who played an instrument also achieved much success during their tenures in office.

Can we “blame it on the music?

What do you think?

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Your kind comments, questions and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

 

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Sources: World Journalism Institute, Summer, 2018.

National Association For Music Education Feb 13/2015

Wikipedia, the free enclyopedia.

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Classical Music, Internet & You-tube Generation

 

“Music was my refuge. I could crawl into space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.”

– Maya Angelou (1928 – 2014)

Is Classical music missing a beat? 

Has the music of  Brach, Brahms & Beethoven become alien to the under 40-generation?

At one time, perhaps, but no longer.  Not since the birth of the internet and you-tube generation.

For classical music lovers, the internet is the dawning of the golden age.

How the internet has saved classical music

There was a time when classical music was considered a dead or dying genre.

In fact, its disappearance from the television and other media between 1980 – 2000 gave some credence to this belief.

However, thanks to the internet, this has changed and continues to do so at an alarming rate.  So what role has the internet played in the salvation of classical music?  Consider this:

  • Internet browsing has made classical music more accessible to all. 
  • More information is readily available about composers and their compositions

    Classical Music & the New Technology

  • Listeners can hear  snippets of a song or watch a video clip before purchasing
  • Shopping for concert tickets online has become a breeze
  • Digital sales are now the wave of the future due to lower marketing costs. 

The Classical Connection

The role of technology and the Internet on classical music.

Technology has brought a new excitement to music audiences like never before.
The compelling videos create an appreciation and empathy for the artist and an appetite which is not easily appeased.
Many musicians, for example, now engage audiences through interactive websites, promote live performances and their new recordings. People return for more information, give an opinion or comment.

So, what are some of the

Benefits of an On-Line Presence 

  • increased CD or Video sales
  • Sold out concerts
  • Increase your following and fan base
  • More attraction to producers, managers or record  companies
  • Contribute to building a classical music worldwide audience

Classical music, the Internet  And  You-tube generation

London’s  classical music lovers were given the treat of a lifetime recently.

Toddlers, teenagers, and even seniors came out in droves to see the charismatic 28-year-old Gustavo Dudamel conduct the 120-strong  Venezuela’s Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra.

And the conductor – the dynamic, charismatic, 28-year old Venezuelan virtuoso Gustavo Dudamel. No disappointment here. In fact, after the playing of Tchaikovsky’s 4th symphony, the audience brought the house down. They raised the roof with their applause and flung their colorful jackets into the crowd with excitement and exuberance.

The You-Tube-Symphony Orchestra

You-Tube Generation Classical Concert Orchestra
 Enter the You-Tube-Symphony Orchestra – composing  96 musicians from all around the globe.

Their primary meeting and auditioning place – the internet. 

Yet, after only 2 days of rehearsals in person, their concert at Carnegie Hall was sold-out.

Conclusion

The under- 40 generation have embraced the new technology with open arms.

The production and presentation of classical music through the internet have bred new life into a dying genre.
A younger generation like Mr. Dudamel and Chinese pianist Lang Lang are seizing the batons and running.

Their ways of communication are fresh, engaging and often surprising when contrasted with traditional methods.

‘We’ve come a long way, baby,’ and for classical music lovers like myself, ‘the beat goes on.’

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I love to hear from my readers so please let know if this article has helped you in any way.

Your questions, comments,  or constructive criticisms are greatly appreciated.

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Sources: The Guardian – Music-The Observer Jan6/08

– Yale School of MusicNews Feb.10/12

–  Financial Times – April 17/09

 Images: Max Pixel / Pixabay

My Product Review – Children’s Classics Stories in Music

CHILDREN’S CLASSICS STORIES IN MUSIC                                                              

Website: Https://www.MaestroClassics.com

Product: Maestro Classics 12 CD Set

Price: $149.95

Owners: STEPHEN & BONNIE SIMON
Overall Rank: *****

PRODUCT OVERVIEW

Accompanied by the superb London Philharmonic Orchestra, this is a fantastic collection of children’s classic stories put to music.  Highly recommended for kids of all ages,  these stories come to life in an uplifting, entertaining and educational environment.

All CD’s come with a 24-page activity book.

Included in this amazing 12-CD set are:

  • Peter & The Wolf
  • The Nutcracker &
  • The Story Of Swan Lake

Peter & The Wolf

Peter, a young boy, decides to disobey his parents and climb over a garden wall.  Lo and behold – behind the wall he encounters a wolf and the drama begins.  Thanks to some friends – a bird, cat, and dog – however, he was able to capture the wolf and return it to the zoo.

The London Philharmonic Orchestra, Grammy-nominated conductor Stephen Simon as well as narrator Yada combine to make Peter & The Wolf a magical listening experience.

The Peter & The Wolf CD,  as with all CD’s, can be purchased separately at the very economical price of $16.98, inclusive of activity book and free shipping.

  • The Nutcracker 

Clara receives a nutcracker for Christmas and wonderful things begin to happen. The Nutcracker is considered one the world’s most famous ballet and is sure to delight the young, and not-so-young alike.

  • The Story Of Swan Lake

This is a classic, enchanting story of a prince who falls in love with a beautiful princess. However, an evil magician casts a spell on the princess which turns her into a swan. Only by proving his true love for the princess can the spell be broken.

Some of the remaining  CD’s that comprise the set  include the humorous Carnival Of the Animals, the thrilling

Casey At The Bat and highly entertaining Tortoise and the Hare.     

maestro_classics_complete_mp3_collection_image
Children’s Classical Stories In Music

 CD’s Or MP3

All CD’s can be purchased separately at https://www.maestroclassics.com for the price of $16.98, including a 24-page activity booklet along plus free shipping.

For the more tech-savvy, among us, this collection is also available in Mp3 format at the price of $9.98 each,  for all computer and mobile devices.

Alternatively,  the entire collection in Mp3 format is also available for the reduced price of  $99.98,  $10.00 off the regular 13 mp-3 collections.

The 24-page activity booklet in PDF format is also included with the download.

Included with  CD’s and Mp3’s  are:
the composer’s biography and a sing/dance along track.

Name: Maestro Classics Stories In Music

Website: http://www.MaestroClassics.com

Owners: Stephen & Bonnie Simon

Product: Maestro Classics MP3 Collection
Price: $99.98
Overall  Rank: *****

 

Reviews & Awards

Rave customer reviews have been abundant.

One teacher found them ideal for classroom, rainy days at home and car rides.

Another customer, Pei Ling says,

“This set of CDs is superb. The narration is great and has very informative musical tidbits. The orchestra is wonderful too. We have learned so much about the different styles of music from the CDs and my children begged to listen to them during our road trip.” 

Press reviews from such esteemed organization like Washington Post and School Library Journal  have also highly

endorsed this amazing music collection.

This fantastic collection has received over fifty (50) National Awards including:

NAPPA (National Parenting Centre Award), Gold Award                    

Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, Platinum Award &

Creative Child Magazine Award, Preferred Choice Awards

 

So whether CD or MP3 format, why not check it out here at https://www.MaestroClassics.com

 

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Classical Symphony Orchestras – Do They Need Conductors?

“A man who wants to lead the orchestra must turn his back on the crowd.” – Max Lucado

My paraphrase: Whatever it is you wish to accomplish in life, you must ignore the naysayers.

What Is A Classical Symphony Orchestra?

 

Of course, when we think of the word ‘classical ‘ our musical minds go back to the classical period (1775-1825).

Whereas classical music refers to a particular genre or style of music the term itself is broadly used to describe all types of orchestral music.

Some of the greatest composers and masterminds of that period include Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang A. Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven and Franz Schubert.

So, what is a Classical as opposed to Symphony orchestra?

Classical vs. Symphony Orchestra

A classical orchestra is considered to be smaller than a symphony orchestra and has fewer instruments.

A symphony orchestra, meanwhile, is a large classical orchestra, consisting of a mixture of instruments, inclusive of percussion, double bass, woodwinds, and strings family.

 

The Amazing One-Man Band

According to Wikipedia, a one-man band (or woman) is a musician who plays a number of instruments simultaneously using his hands, feet, limbs or other body parts.

You have probably heard about an amazing one-man-band street performer (Cigo man band.)       

Apparently, this guy, a singer, accompanies himself on the acoustic guitar, with a harmonica strapped below his mouth. He also has a flute or clarinet attached to his neck with cymbals between the knees. Additionally, a bass drum is attached to his back triggered by a pedal tied to his feet.
How he moves about and performs is truly remarkable, but, additionally, he has tambourines and maracas attached to his limbs.

He walks the streets displaying his talents, and patrons reward him with monetary donations gifts in a special pouch extending from his neck.

What’s more, one-band men (and women) are becoming more and more commonplace worldwide.

Multi-instrumentalist

Throughout the years, the music industry has produced many great, world famous multi-instrumentalist.
Take the renowned Prince for example. He is reported to have played over 27 musical instruments, all really well.
These include clavinet, percussion, saxophone, harmonica, piano, keyboard, drums, and the beat goes on.

Watch the conductor

The story is told of Joshua Bell, one of the world’s most prominent violinist and conductor. Renowned for his passion, and multi-faceted musical interest, Joshua has a very unusual way of conducting his 44-member chamber orchestra.

Rather than waving a baton, he directs when playing his own violin, by sending signals and direction that orchestra understands. For instance, every dip in his violin, raise in his eyebrow or the way he draws the bow, communicates the sound he’s looking for.

Winner of many awards including Grammy, he is also a soloist, chamber musician and recording artist. He won an Oscar for his soundtrack, the Red Violin, one of over 40 CD’s he has recorded. Joshua is an outspoken advocate for classical music and a strong proponent of musical education in the classrooms.

To Conduct Or Not To Conduct 

Do orchestras really need conductors?

Are conductors merely overpaid showman stealing the performer’s thunder by their arm-waving, body twisting antics?

Can’t the band members read and interpret the music themselves?

Yes, an orchestra can, in theory, keep time without a conductor.

However, despite the fact that conductorless orchestras are becoming more commonplace, research suggests that there is, indeed,  a …

Need For A Conductor

  • Without a conductor, there is the temptation of each band member to interpret the music for himself, thus creating disharmony and timing issues.
  • Synchronize the movements of all band members particularly in large orchestras where there is a time-lag in sound from the back to the front of the players.
  • A scientific study revealed that a conductor’s influence over the players is tremendous. Orchestras with conductors produced an overall much more delightful performance than those without.

What do you think?

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Hope this article has helped you in some way. Your questions, comments, and suggestions are always greatly appreciated. Please leave me a comment below.

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Sources: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

The Cavan Project

Seattle Symphony

NPR Classical

Classical Acoustic-Electric Guitar – Review

Classical Acoustic-Electric Guitar / My Review

“The guitar is the easiest instrument to play, and the hardest to play well.” – Andres Segovia.

Brief History Of The Guitar

We owe the name guitar’ (kithara) to the ancient Greeks, although its existence in some form predates recorded history.

Carved images of stringed guitar-like instruments can be traced as far back as 3,000 years ago during the Mesopotamian and Babylonian empires.

Guitar Cousins & Ancestors

Two musical instruments, the European Lute and the Arabian Oud, were most important in guitar’s history and development. These instruments are often referred to as the cousins of the guitar, according to scholars.

Since then the instrument has traveled across all continents, countries, and cultures which have greatly influenced its development.

The Classical Guitar

The classical guitar is often called the first modern guitar in history, thanks primarily to Antonio de Torres Jurado (1817 – 1892)

Antonio -de-torres

*Antonio Torres was a Spanish guitarist and luthier who has been described as “the most important guitar maker of the 19th century.”

He is the credited most for the development of the modern classical guitar. His design of the classical guitar was far superior to any known at the time and has become the standard for acoustic guitars today.

Another influential Spanish guitarist, Andres Segovia improvised upon Torres‘ classical guitar to the point where it is now used as a concert instrument.

Classical Acoustic-Electrical Guitars / Distinction

Since we are reviewing a Classical Acoustic-Electrical guitar, it behooves us to know the distinguishing feature(s)

Whereas shapes and sizes are ever evolving, the most obvious difference between the three guitars are the strings.

While acoustic and electrical guitars use steel strings, Classical guitar use nylon strings.

Another important distinction is in the production of sound. Both the Classical and Acoustic guitars produce sound by the vibration of the strings through their bodies.

However, with the electric guitar, the string’s vibration is routed via a cable into an amplifier. Without an amplifier, you will be unable to hear the sound.

2nd Most Popular Musical Instrument

The twentieth century saw the transitioning of the classical guitar from a background musical instruments to the forefront.

From its humble beginning some 3500 years, the guitar is widely acclaimed as the second most popular instrument in the world. Second only, that is, to the piano.

Ibanez AEG10N11 Grand Concert Classical Acoustic – Electrical Guitar

Looking for an exceptional Grand Concert Classical Acoustic-Electric Guitar at a great price?

The Ibanez AEG10N11 may be what you are looking for.

This gem combines a classical guitar styling with an acoustic-electric grand concert body.

The slim body facilitates easy playing and a clear, rich sound. It has a spruce top with mahogany back and sides,

and includes a built-in tuner and a Sonicare Fisherman’s pickup.

Choice of two colors Black and Tangerine.

Product Overview

PRODUCT: Ibanez AEG10N11 Grand Classical Concert Acoustic-Electric Guitar

PRICE: $299.99

CHEAPEST PLACE TO BUY: ZZounds.com                                     

USER RATING: * * * * *                                                                           

MANUFACTURERS SUPPORT: * * * *

FEATURES: * * * * *

QUALITY: * * * * *

SOUND: * * * * *

VALUE: * * * * *

EASE OF USE: * * * * *

WOW FACTOR: * * * * *

Warranty: 1-year warranty on NEW instruments from original purchaser with proof of purchase.

My Conclusion

This guitar is not recommended for entry-level guitarists, but for the more mature guitarists. The entry-level guitarist may click here to for My Review: Best Acoustic Guitars For Beginners Or Old Pro.

Sure, there are many more comparable Grand Classical Concert Acoustic-Electric Guitars on the market, but if you want value for money, the Ibanez AEG10N11 is hard to beat. 

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Sources: Guitar History Facts 2017 *Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia”

History Of The Guitar October 2016

Liberty Park Music

Zzounds

 

 

Proms, Pageantry And Popularity

Why couldn’t the quartet find the composer? Because he was HADYN”
“Actually, classical music is pretty cool – but some people just can’t HANDEL it.”

Is Classical Music Popular?

Question: What other genres of music written over 500 years ago can still excite audiences – both young and old – in a contemporary setting today?

Answer: Classical music, of course.

Everyone is familiar with the pomp, pageantry, and popularity of classical music concerts.
Now, even at Proms classical music is fast becoming the pace-setter.

See You AT The Prom

At a packed London’s famous Royal Albert Hall on July 29, 2017, the audience was captivated by a night of traditional and contemporary classical music.

Prom Night At London’s Royal Albert Hall

It was Prom night, and, for many, the thrill of a lifetime. This night, an audience would be served Piano Concerto #1, by Stephen Hough, and an opportunity to hear works by living composers for the first time.

The hot temperature under the dome only seemed to ignite the audiences’ passion through their exuberance and enthusiastic applause.

Indeed, the BBC Proms demonstrate classical music’s appeal to the many as well as the few.

There was a time when classical music was considered ‘elitist’ – it’s listeners mostly old, white, rich or retirees.

However, Proms are breaking down those barriers and leveling the playing field as one of the most popular classical music festivals in the world. They are easily accessible and do not discriminate in its appeal to black and white, rich or poor.

So again the question …..

IS CLASSICAL MUSIC POPULAR?

Is it still relevant in today’s society? Has technology and the influence of pop and rock concerts eclipsed that of classical music?

On the surface it may appear so, however, in many ways, not only is classical music popular, but this genre of music is actually growing stronger.

The historical importance of classical music is well documented. Famous composers were lauded for their works while the violin and keyboard were the instruments of choice.

Other genres of music like Jazz, rock and pop were introduced during the 20th century. This new and more danceable music became more popular and casual. This greatly impacted traditional chamber music and composers, which had to take a backseat to the new craze for a while.

So what are some of the things symphony orchestras are doing today to increase their popularity?

Outdoor summer concert series – where audiences enjoy classical and movie favorites at a picnic.
More pop concerts in a casual setting which draw more diverse audiences
Classical Outdoor Summer Concert
Making more orchestral and classical music accessible to casual audiences.
Composing more film music, such as themes from Star Wars, adding to the excitement and relevance.

Active Engagement

Classical music is not only about passive listening but about active engagement. It provides an opportunity for resurrecting your creative genius by learning an instrument or composing a piece.

Playing and creating contributes to brain health and a child’s mental development, according to verifiable scientific data.

Moreover, what on earth can compare with the mellifluous melodies of a HADYN or HANDEL?

 

Classical music’s influence

It comprises a complexity of different styles, countries, and cultures over hundreds of years.
This lends itself to the uniqueness and popularity of this genre of music, as well as providing many unforgettable moments of listening enjoyment.

The music of Mozart, Brahms or Beethoven, represents excellence at its highest level and is sure to guarantee a life-enriching experience.

Whether proms, concerts or movies, Classical music’s influence is inescapable.

Is classical music popular?

You be the judge.

What do you think?

Your comments, questions or constructive criticism will be greatly appreciated.


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Sources: The Carolinian – Sept.6/17

– Evening Standard – July 14/17

Photos courtesy – Wikimedia Commons/

-Pixabay

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Health Benefits Of Classical Music

“Classical music is the kind we keep thinking will turn into a tune.”                                                                                                                                                                      –Kin Hubbard

 

 You’re heard it so many times, it sounds like a scorched record – yet, there are…

Amazing Health Benefits of listening to Classical Music

In fact, these health benefits are simply amazing, accessible  – but also easily verifiable and scientifically proven.

What’s even more amazing is classical music’s affordability, and your wallet will be none the wiser for it.

In this post, we will examine just a few of those benefits.

Truth be told, however, there are benefits to be had from listening to any genre of music, 

so what’s so special about Classical music?

Health Benefits: boost brain power and memory.

The Mozart Effect

“The Mozart effect” is based on an experiment first published in Nature which suggested that listening to the music of  Mozart boosts scores on students IQ tests.  Research results also saw short-term improvement in certain kinds  “mental tasks” called spatial-temporal reasoning. In short, it makes you smarter.

Mood changer and stress reliever

Feeling anxious and stressed out?  Chances are you need a  classical music massage

Taking a few minutes to listen to classical music has the same physiological effect as a message, researchers have found.  This simple technique helps to relieve stress and depression by causing a positive chemical reaction within your brain and reducing cortisol levels in the body. This, in turn, allows subjects to relax to the max.

By all means, avoid listening to hard rock or club music when feeling anxious or depressed,  as this will only make a bad situation worse.

Health Benefits: calms minds, relaxes the body and facilitates sleep.

A random study of college students substituted random sleep aids for just 45 minutes of classical music therapy.

Unsurprisingly, the students showed vast improvement in the duration and quality of sleep.

 

Improves Physical Performance

Not Just Exercise – It’s Physical Therapy

What is your favorite sport?  Running, working out in the gym?  Whatever it is, you  can maximize your workout  by listening to your favorite “selection of songs.”

According to scientific studies conducted, the right music mix boosts endurance and improves overall motivation.

Research, however,  also suggest that any genre of music  – not merely classical – will produce the same benefits. 

 

Classical Music May Help Normalize Blood Pressure

Okay, so what if I suffer from High Blood pressure – can classical music do anything for me?

You betcha!

According to a study in the Journal Of Health Psychology, participants who listened to classical music significantly lowered their blood pressure levels as opposed to those who did not.   Researchers found that listening to the music relieves stress, improving better heart rhythm and thus normalizing blood pressure levels.

More Productivity in the Workplace

Whistling in the workplace?  

Researchers have discovered an almost effortless way to increase accuracy and productivity in the workplace.

Yes, playing Bach or Baroque music in the reading room at hospitals also increased work satisfaction, according to research from the University of Maryland and Pennsylvania.

Who knows, it may even leave you whistling in the workplace.

Better, Healthier Relationships

What is your personality type?  Are you an introvert, apathetic individual?

Research is ongoing about the emotional effects of listening to classical music, but so far they are revolutionary.

Volunteers were required, in a study by the Southern Methodist University, to write about the most significant event in their lives. Some participants had classical music playing in the background, while others didn’t. The results showed that the former group was much more willing to disclose information than the latter.

Beyond the page – classical music can help you open up to new friendships and relationships.

As incredible as it may sound, listening to classical music can actually improve your emotional state – and actually put a smile on the most melancholy face.

So what are you waiting for? Just pass the medicine.

 

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*Sources: Wikipedia, the free enclclopedia

                – Health Wire – June 4, 2015

               -Readers Digest.com /Journal of Behavioural Medicine

-Photos: Courtesy Pixabay

               – Infographic courtesy of TakeLessons.com

            

My Product Review:Best Acoustic Guitar For Beginner Or Old Pro

MY  PRODUCT REVIEW:

Epiphone DR-100 Performance Acoustic Guitar

Best Acoustic Guitar For Beginners Or Old Pro

You’ve been dreaming about it for a long time.

You know you’ve always wanted to play the acoustic guitar, but the price, among other things has always been a factor.
Or perhaps, you just wanted to bless your child or teenager with the perfect gift to begin the journey of guitar playing.
Whether you are a new player looking for a first guitar or old pro needing an affordable  guitar to keep around the house,

the New Epiphone DR-100  Performance  Acoustic Guitar maybe the answer to your dreams.

 

Firstly, a definition …

What is an acoustic guitar?

An acoustic guitar is one which  “produces its sound by transmitting the vibration of sounds to the ear, as opposed to electrical amplification…”      – Wikipedia

The Free dictionary explains that an acoustic guitar is one which produces its normal sounds through the sounding board,  and does not require electrical amplification.”

In simplest terms, an acoustic guitar is  “a traditional, unamplified guitar.”

Finding the right acoustic guitar

So, how do you know which acoustic guitar is right for you?
The sound and feel of the guitar are key to the answer to this question and are necessary to bring out your best playing.
Additionally, a combination of some key elements combines to bring out the strings’ most stimulating sounds:
  1. It’s tonewood
  2. Body shape
  3. Construction and
  4. the unique touch of the guitarist

Still, there is much variety in the acoustic realm.  The acoustic-electric, 12 string, nylon string and travel-sized – make a case for anyone’s taste.

The Epiphone DR-100 Performance Guitar

 

features a mahogany body, with rosewood fretboard and spruce top neck.  

3 Models To Choose From:

Ebony, Natural & Vintage Sunburst

The Epiphone DR-100 balances quality with economy. Looking for the utmost in quality and sound?  This baby delivers!  As a second of backup guitar, countless players have been amazed by its tone quality and stability.

Other Features Include

  • Nickel hardware
  • Precision Construction and a
  • Comfortable Rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays.

With the Ephiphone emblem, this elegantly designed guitar is as attractive as its price tag.

Epiphone DR-100 Performance Acoustic Guitar

Guilty Pleasure

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*Source Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Contagious Classical Music

 

 

 

Contagious Coughing Avalanches At Classical Concerts

 

What is Classical Music?

Classical music is art music, rooted in the tradition of Western music, including both liturgical and secular music. More specifically, it refers to an era commonly called the classical period (AD1750 – 1820) – Wikipedia

But is Classical Music Contagious?

According to Webster’s dictionary – one definition of Contagious is “exciting similar emotions or conduct in others.”

 

Contagious clapping at chamber concerts

 Contagious Clapping At  Chamber Concerts
A new study by Swedish Researchers in the Journal Of Royal Society suggests that there is social pressure both to start and stop clapping at concerts. “You have this social pressure to start clapping, but, once started, there is equal pressure not to stop until someone initiates that stopping.” Moreover, the study suggests that applause has little to do with the quality of performance. Once one or two members begin or stop clapping, others follow suit.

Conventions surrounding applause vary from country to country.

In Bergen, Norway, the audience will erupt into an extended rhythmic applause if they like the orchestra, but will not cheer or scream.

Meanwhile in America, standing ovations are the normal way of showing appreciation and they are instant, usually accompanied by a lot of vocals.

However, in Germany, there is an abrupt silence after the final note and before the applause. However, after the aura of silence which lasts for about 5-seconds, the applause continues ad infinitum.

The question is then, “what effect does it have on you?

Contagious Coughing Avalanches 

Classical audiences cough on purpose to a chamber performance – according to *Professor Andres Wagoner, from the University Of Hannover. According to the study, coughing spells are intentional and particularly prevalent among classical audiences. The research found that the average concertgoer coughs more 36 times a day, more than twice the norm.
However, maintains the professor, although the volume of the coughing fluctuates, it is more disruptive during the quieter, boring moments rather than the more interesting parts.

Contagious Cascading Coughing Avalanches

Moreover, the professor refers coughs in concerts as mysteriously contagious and likens them to coughing avalanches, cascading through the audiences.

Hallelujah!

          Chamber Orchestra In Concert

The story is told in The Telegraph about an enthusiastic Classical music lover and Royal Society Of Arts Fellow.

This fellow was so overly excited by the performance of “Hallelujah Chorus” he attempted to crowd-surf, his hand raised and whooping while lurching from side to side.
However, his enthusiasm was not contagious. Rather than “exciting similar emotion or conduct in others,” the audience became so distracted that they proceeded to physically eject him from the theatre.

Positive Effects 

The amazing benefits of classical music upon humans are well documented.  Among others – memory improvement, sleep inducement and even lowering blood pressure are just a few.  In fact, click here for my prior posts for research showing how classical music calms cats and canines, and positively impacts plant growth.

 

Conclusion

But back to the original question – is classical music contagious?

The answer to that question lies in what it does for you.

For me, it certainly excites the emotions – whether it’s clapping of hands or just a shaking of the head to the beat.

Suddenly, all is well with the world – no matter what’s going on. In short, it’s my mood changer – from sullen to satisfied.

And when I’m in a good mood – everybody knows including pets and plants, cats and canines.

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What do you think?

I trust this article has helped you in some way. I love to hear from my readers.

Any questions, comments, or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

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Sources: Classic Music.com, BBC Music Official Website /June 2013

*Limelight, Australia’s Classical Musical and Arts Magazine

The Telegraph – 30 June/2014.

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