Science Weekly takes on evolutionary psychologist Stephen Pinker’s idea that music is merely "auditory cheesecake" - pleasant on the ear but ultimately not much use.
In our Music and the Brain special, James Randerson and the team ask why music evolved, how it is linked to language, how it is understood by the brain and how it can be used to treat patients.
Dr Ian Cross talks about how music acts as a social tool. Dr Eric Clark at Oxford University tells us why dance music has such a profound effect on a club full of revellers. And Paul Robertson, founder and leader of the Medici String Quartet explains music can communicate subtle ideas and help people with Alzheimer’s diease. Also, Dr Adena Schachner at Harvard tell us why animals dance.
The Bowery Boys look at where the modern music industry began…. on 28th Street? A seemingly nondescript street in midtown Manhattan contains some of the most important buildings where early American pop music was created.
Tin Pan Alley was a bustling and frenzied area, the most creative area of the city, with songwriters — and song pluggers — churning out iconic music. Sing along as we talk about the greatest songwriters and the process they went through to create the most influential tunes of the century. (http://theboweryboys.blogspot.com/)
Here’s a confession. I want to be able to think like Merlin Mann.
He’s really smart on the topic of productivity, and in fact some part of his success comes from 43Folders.com which is a reference to David Allen’s Getting Things Done system. But his work is not just about productivity. It’s about creativity and purpose and striving to stay human and sane in a busy and distracting world and doing work that matters, doing Great Work. And he does all of this in funny, provocative, iconoclastic way.
In fact, writing this introduction and listening to the interview again has already provoked me to shift some of my own commitments in an effort to, as he puts it, “identify and destroy small return bullshit. Shut off anything that’s noisier than it is useful.” Great stuff indeed, and this is a wise and funny interview.
In our conversation we talk about:
- How the present is a “remedial course for the future” – and the pros and cons of those ‘creation myth’ stories of where people find clues for their Great Work
- The importance of an open heart and just where that might lead you
- The connection between productivity and creativity
- The two levels of prioritization (and how freeing it is to know that)
- And quite a bit more
You can follow Merlin on Twitter at http://twitter.com/hotdogsladies
The interviews are all between 25 and 30 minutes long. You can either download them here as mp3s, or go to iTunes, type in “Great Work Interviews” and you’ll see them all there.
Another in the series of experimental, filmic, soundscape, found sound, ambient, folk, classical montage mixes.
Headphones recommended. Darker in tone than previous mixes, but that darkness is punctuated by positivity and possibly resolved.
Listening in eeries places (like whilst on the London Underground alone) is perhaps not recommended.
- 00:00 First Commercial Message (1890) — P T Barnum
- 00:09 For Francis Bacon (Part 2) — Anduin
- 06:42 Terrified Bad Music Will Be Made Into Records — Sir Arthur Sullivan
- 07:11 Past Tense Kitchen Movement — Ezekiel Honig
- 10:58 Saffron Revolution — Fennesz
- 16:06 Reeds of Brown Lake — Lawrence English
- 17:48 Footpath Apparition — Loren Chasse
- 22:40 Melodia (li) — Johann Johansson
- 24:16 Porselein — Machinefabriek
- 30:47 Last Light — Svarte Greiner
- 37:57 Intercepted Communications — Lawrence English
- 38:02 The Raven — Edgar Allen Poe
- 41:14 Terminal Motor — Lawrence English
- 45:01 Silver Wings — Inca Ore
- 50:11 Figase — Gultskra Arikler
- 55:06 Forest Mountain — Nalle
- 61:15 San Solomon — Balmorhea
- 63:24 Final Farewell — Florence Nightingale
- 64:05 Voice in the Headphones — Mount Eerie With Julie Doiron And Fred Squire
Jill Bolte Taylor describes her stroke as an unusual path to growth. Richard Davidson is observing contemplatives with a brain scanner. A round-up of some of the latest research into happiness, from economist Richard Layard and psychologists Robert Biswas-Diener and Sonja Lyubormirsky. Satish Kumar says that the secret to a stress-free life is to take it at a walking pace. Richard Schoch believes the way we think about happiness today is a thin, watery version of a deep and complex subject. Al Green has spent his life testifying on stage and in the pulpit to the power of grace, love and happiness.