Magic music

Fine report yesterday from Alex, Kodi, & Blake in Happiness, on music: on how its engagement with the brain’s neurochemistry delivers such pleasing doses of dopamine and makes learning fun, how musical improvisation flows like a good conversation and vice versa, how the discordant strains of a Stravinsky can shock, how the enthusiastic energy of “Na Nach Nachma” can heal, how the frenzy of “Crash Worship” can induce a trance of awakening. We agreed that people who deliberately resist exposure to all kinds of music are missing the point. Our closing note was to supplement the “ten happiest songs according to Science”:

–Don’t Stop Me Now- Queen
–Dancing Queen- ABBA
–Good Vibrations- Beach Boys
–Uptown Girl- Billy Joel
–Eye of the Tiger- Survivor
–I’m a Believer- The Monkees
–Girls Just Wanna Have Fun- Cyndi Lauper
–Livin’ on a Prayer- Bon Jovi
–I Will Survive- Gloria Gaynor
–walking on Sunshine- Katrina and The Waves

My top ten has to include some Beatles & Stones (“In My Life,” “Happy”), just about any Steely Dan (Donald Fagen’s “New Frontier,” about early-60s bomb shelter vigor and optimism, is my go-to song whenever I need a quick hit of happy), John Prine (“Spanish Pipedream“)… Bottom line: all brains may be more-or-less the same, when it comes to the neurophysiology of music, but minds differ. And that’s good!

In CoPhi Blake and Axle did a nice Harry Potter report, though they didn’t mention my favorite Dumbledore quote: “Happiness can always be found, if we just remember to turn on the light.” And maybe they’d agree with this one too:  Ah, music. A magic beyond all we do here!”

5:45/6:44, 57/60

via Blogger


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