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Author Topic: Why Music?
KnightEnder
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Evolutionarily speaking what advantage does music give us?

Or, why did God make us love music so much?

Can you imagine the world without music? If it didn't exist?

KE

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Tezcatlipoca
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Results from a quick Google search.
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Gaoics79
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I can imagine a world without music; it honestly wouldn't make much difference to me. I can appreciate music in some context, but I find I rarely care for music in of itself; if it doesn't accompany some kind of story, I'm rarely interested. So I enjoy songs that tell a real story, some types of musical theater, and theme music in movies. But I guess I'm weird because I don't actually listen to music outside of those contexts. When people ask me what type of music I like, I don't have an answer...

But then again, I'd argue it's partly the fault of popular music... I like music that tells a story, and there is no such thing in pop music. Pop music lyrics are almost incomprehensible to me; I can't understand 99% of what is being said (no one enunciates) and what I do understand is incoherent babble. Even the average love song is just too abstract to understand.

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Tezcatlipoca
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You mean you listen to music to hear what people are saying?

I could care less about what they are talking about. It could be about how great Kim Jong Il is. I don't listen to music to hear a story be told, I listen to music for music itself.

My favorite music is one where there isn't people talking at all or at least in a language I can't understand (that being all but one), which is probably why a very large part of my music collection is soundtracks and orchestra.

I find it mars the experience of actually enjoying the sound of a song when you have someone complaining about how terrible their day has been or how they really love you. Stop bitching and play.

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Zyne
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I'm not sure there's a reliable distinction between 'music' and other sounds. I can't imagine a world without hearing things that make sounds.
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Adam Lassek
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quote:
I can appreciate music in some context, but I find I rarely care for music in of itself; if it doesn't accompany some kind of story, I'm rarely interested. So I enjoy songs that tell a real story, some types of musical theater, and theme music in movies.
There are plenty of concept albums that tell stories. Pink Floyd's The Wall, dredg's el cielo, Dream Theater's Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory, and Porcupine Tree's Deadwing come to mind. Have you ever tried listening to stuff like that?
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JoshuaD
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This thread makes me think of one of my favorite quotes.

"Music is essentially useless, as life is."

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RoseAuthor
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ahhhh.. but to me;

It's an aide which reaches the deepest parts of the things we bury under logic and reason and brings us to the spirit of the humanity we all have. Whether it is rage, injustice, broken hearted, rejection or sheer joy ... music seeks and expresses the truth of the human experience and soul of life. And in all truth, we all want more than a great deduction, or reasonable argument. We want to connect to self and thus to connect to other people.

Music is essential to sociology because it's essential to individuals who make up society.

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pickled shuttlecock
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quote:
Originally posted by Zyne:
I'm not sure there's a reliable distinction between 'music' and other sounds. I can't imagine a world without hearing things that make sounds.

One word: structure.
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philnotfil
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quote:
Originally posted by pickled shuttlecock:
quote:
Originally posted by Zyne:
I'm not sure there's a reliable distinction between 'music' and other sounds. I can't imagine a world without hearing things that make sounds.

One word: structure.
4'33" (you could argue that the three movements give it structure, but that would be as silly as the song itself)

The practical working definition of music is sound organized in time, but just like little kids, composers want to test boundaries and there is much music written specifically to test what is meant by the words "sound," "organized," and "time."

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Zyne
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quote:
One word: structure.
Traffic is structured.
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rightleft22
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Two words: String theory
When we hear a “pleasing” sound, like a magnate aligning the particles in a bar of iron, for a moment we all vibrate in synchronicity. [Smile]

I like the way J.R.R. Tolkien, in the ‘Silmarillion’, used music as the primary tool in the creation of the world.

Music has the power to connect that goes beyond language even though language itself is a kind of music.

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KnightEnder
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Zyne, imagine a world without traffic. [Smile] No wait, that's not the same at all is it? [Frown]

I got to thinking about it because I was downloading songs onto my ipod and it amazes me how listening to certain music can improve my mood. (I listen to both the words and the music, but I think the music is the more important component.)

Most things I can see how evolution shaped us, but I can't figure out how finding rhythmic noises pleasant can be an advantage? Where's Vulture? Or as I think of him "Mr. Science".

Edited to add: I missed yours RL. Interesting theory if you're serious.

KE

[ October 10, 2006, 09:07 AM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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Jesse
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KE

Cat Stevens beats Prozac hands down.

[Smile]

We spend our entire lives listening to the beat of our own hearts. I'm not suprised about the effect of rythym, it's the effect of melody that boggles me.

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kenmeer livermaile
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rhythm is metric via tyemporal duration. melody is metric through vibratory frequencies. rhythm 'ells time'; melody 'tells space'.

rhythm focuses our sense of motion through time. melody creates sensations of space and phenomena with which to fill space).

of course, the two are conjoined. rhythm lets a series of notes be more than a chord. melody gives rhythm space in which to express its temporal motion.

[ October 10, 2006, 09:54 PM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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Daruma28
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Music is but one facet of humanity's need for artistic expression - to both produce and consume it.

Artistic expression is the sublime, abstract projection of our minds and bodies abilities and talents (both innate and developed), to be channeled, tempered and/or molded to produce an aesthetic creation that satiates a visceral compulsion we all have to stimulate our mental processes.

It is simply a base aspect of who we are. Without art, we would not be human.

That's just my belief. [Smile]

[ October 10, 2006, 10:03 PM: Message edited by: Daruma28 ]

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winkey151
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quote:
Originally posted by Zyne:
quote:
One word: structure.
Traffic is structured.
I love Traffic. Saw them back in the day. Stevie Winwood has such a good voice. The were such a good band.

And, yes I know you weren't talking about Traffic the band.

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NobleHunter
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Love is music is life.

Need anymore be said?

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KnightEnder
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Yes? [Confused]
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kenmeer livermaile
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John Barleycorn says hello.
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KnightEnder
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Is that Jack Daniels brother? Or Jim Beams?
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kenmeer livermaile
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neither, just an old tune about making liquor:

There were three men came out of the west,
Their fortunes for to try.
And these three men made a solemn vow:
John Barleycorn must die.

They've plowed, they've sown, they've harrowed him in,
Threw clods upon his head.
And these three men made a solemn vow:
John Barleycorn was dead.

They've let him lie for a very long time,
Till the rains from heav'n did fall.
And little Sir John sprung up his head,
And so amazed them all.

They've let him stand 'till midsummer's day,
Till he looked both pale and wan.
And little Sir John's grown a long, long beard,
And so become a man.

They've hired men with scythes so sharp,
To cut him off at the knee.
They've rolled him and tied him by the waist,
Serving him most barb'rously.

They've hired men with the sharp pitchforks,
Who pricked him to the heart.
And the loader, he has served him worse than that,
For he's bound him to the cart.

They've wheeled him 'round and around the field,
'Till they came unto a barn,
And there they've made a solemn oath,
On poor John Barleycorn.

They've hired men with the crabtree sticks,
To cut him skin from bone,
And the Miller, he has served him worse than that,
For he's ground him between two stones.

And little Sir John in the nut-brown bowl,
And the brandy in the glass.
And little Sir John in the nut-brown bowl,
Proved the strongest man at last.

The Huntsman, he can't hunt the fox,
Nor so loudly blow his horn,
And the Tinker, he can't mend kettle nor pot,
Without a little Barleycorn.

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rightleft22
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quote:
Interesting theory if you're serious.
I like the visual image of string theory and the various ways that the “strings” are thought to align/combine/vibrate together in order to create unique elements, it all seems very “musical”.

Words/music has the power to move us and or put us off. It’s not always just what is said but how it’s said. How is vibrates, resonates if you will, within us that propels us into ‘accord’ or ‘discord’.

I like what Artur Schnabel said:
“The pauses between the notes - ah, that is where the art resides!
The combination of notes and spaces is what creates music, the spaces in someway more important then the notes as they define the note and its feeling.
Life is kind of like that, not so much defined by the actions we undertake but by the “space” - the quality of the “space” – which lies between them.

“Music is the only means whereby we feel emotions in their universality.” ~H.A. Overstreet

“All deep things are song. It seems somehow the very central essence of us, song; as if all the rest were but wrappages and hulls!” ~Thomas Carlyle

“Music is what feelings sound like.”

“Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.” ~Victor Hugo

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kenmeer livermaile
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artur schnabel!!!

always a pleasure to see that name...

[ October 11, 2006, 02:38 PM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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EDanaII
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There are two types of "advantages." There are real advantages, such as a car, a house or a hair brush. We've invented these because we enjoy the advantage they give us.

Then there are "perceived" advantages. Things that we think are advantageous, but only because we think so, not, necessarily, because they are real. Examples of such are status symbols, romance and, yes, music.

We don't want these things because they bring a clear advantage like a car or a house. We want them because it is in our NATURE to want them; because we perceive them as advantageous.

Take love, for example, and romance. This is one of the biggest "holy grails" of human existence, but are they, by themselves, advantageous? Love, without sex, is meaningless in terms of real advantage. Nature doesn't care if you're in love, nature only cares if you procreate. Nature only cares about offspring and only uses love as a one of many means to achieve that end. But we are wired to want love as an important part of the procreative act, so it is an important part of our perception.

Same with music. It confers no real advantage in terms of survival, but it does confer a benefit to our perceptions. It can soothe the soul, focus the emotions and create a general state of well being.

Let me be clear, I'm not saying that music is has no advantage, I'm saying that music is advantageous but only within the framework of our personal psyche. It won't grow crops, it won't stop crime, it doesn't hold ceilings up, but it does help "tune our engines."

And, within our collective and conscious society, having a "well tuned engine" can help you decided just how far you wanna push that race; just such a perception can have an evolutionary advantage.

But that's my two beats of four per measure. [Smile]

Ed.

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Jesse
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Hey, I hear James Brown stopped a riot with some music one night.

'Course...RFK did the same with a little honesty and poetry the same night....

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