Singing whales and crazed mice

ULYSSES S. Grant, the Civil War general and 18th President of the US, said he only knew two tunes.

“One of them is Yankee Doodle, and the other isn’t,’’ he said.

That’s sad. Music is as necessary for humankind as it is for birds. It affirms life. It reveals to us beauties we find nowhere else.

Clearly, some forms of music are universally better for us than others.

Scientists say birds, like humans, can learn music while they are still in the egg stage. And termites will apparently eat wood two times faster when listening to heavy metal.

In an experiment to discover how music would affect the ability of mice to learn new things, researchers had one group of mice listen to classical music 24 hours a day and another to heavy metal music.

They then timed the mice as they ran through mazes to see if the music affected their speed of learning.

Unfortunately, they had to cut the first experiment short because the heavy metal mice all killed one another.

In a second experiment, mice that listened to Mozart for 10 hours a day dramatically improved their maze-solving abilities, while the heavy metal mice actually became worse at solving mazes than they had been at the beginning of the experiment.

In controlled laboratory conditions, heavy metal sounds have stunted or killed plants, while other music has enhanced plant growth. Plants exposed to jazz or classical music, particularly Bach and Beethoven, have been observed to lean toward the speakers.

Music directly elicits a range of emotions. Music with a quick tempo in a major key, tend to bring about all the physical changes associated with happiness in listeners. In contrast, music with a slow tempo and minor key can inspire sadness.

One study concluded that whales, long studied for their mysterious but beautiful songs under the seas, are actually crooning music similar in content to 1950s hit rock tunes. Whales use rhythms and melodies similar to those used by humans.

Presumably then, they could be jiving to tunes like Great Balls of Fire, Wake Up, Little Susie and perhaps Splish-Splash, I Was Taking a Bath.

Hear the whales singing

 

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25 thoughts on “Singing whales and crazed mice

  1. Poor, poor mice! All God’s creatures, great and small, should be treated with love and respect and never be subjected to such heartless torture as having to listen to heavy metal. It has the same effect on me! 😉

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  2. Unfortunately, they had to cut the first experiment short because the heavy metal mice all killed one another.

    For me this is of great concern. I wonder if music is a factor to people beating each other up on Saturday night.

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    • I, in no way am into the New Age, nor have I ever knowingly, deliberately practiced it apart from once being addicted to horoscopes, of which I have long ago repented. But once, whilst visiting with a dear friend, a reiki healer made a house call and I was allowed to watch what she did to my friend. I stood at the end of the bed and prayed (silently) for the whole session and at the end of it, the ‘healer’ flicked her hands away from my friend. But because I happened to be standing in the way of where she flicked her hands, at that moment it felt like I had been on the receiving end of a powerful ‘kick in the guts!’ I doubled over in pain.

      What the hell was that about, I wondered. But apparently that flick of the hands was (supposedly) the expulsion of negative energy. Well, I felt it!

      I think we’re more powerful than we realize Dom, that whatever we feed on, both spiritually and physically, is what we are, and that we affect others by what we put out. Hence, if we’re mostly negative energy and put out negative music, there’s a real creative power in that music, and it’s not for good.

      I think that for our own well-being we need to be more discerning as to what we give ourselves over to, align ourselves with, listen to, feed off, and with whom we befriend, because the consequences can be dire.

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      • Yes, I agree with you Dom.

        Reiki healers believe their ‘light’ to be white, and yet their power stems from ungodly spirits, spirit guides and the like. Such deception. So too the music we immerse ourselves in. Be selective and wary and above all, let peace be our guide.

        Give me God’s wall of fire and His abiding Glory Presence; His walls of salvation and gates of praise, any day!

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      • I hope John and Eric are reading this….best material since ‘Tim the Enchanter’ in The Holy Grail, they are doing a reunion tour.

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      • Hi Bubba

        So what lessons do you draw from mice killing each other during heavy metal ?

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      • Hey Dom,

        Well the first thing the occurred to me was that it sounds a lot like an urban myth. And apparently the heavy metal music only had the homicidal effect on the first lot of mice not the second.

        But I just love the way you segue into the weirdest little correlations, I really do – it’s like Nicolas Cage movies and death by drowning in swimming pools only without the data. Maybe the first group of mice all grew up without a father figure that could be it.

        How on earth do you know what kind of music people across the country are listening to on a Saturday night? If they’ve been out clubbing or at a rave it would be extremely unlikely that they have been listening to heavy metal, do you know many venues that specialise in metal on a Saturday? Dance or techno even possibly grunge maybe but metal? Are you aware of anything kind of data that shows metal music was listened to prior to an assault being committed ?

        But anyway don’t let those pesky ol “facts” or the lack thereof get in your way keep em coming.

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      • Hey Dom,

        The other thing is – you did notice that the original experiment claimed to be subjecting the mice to music 24 hours per day.

        If that was the case then I’d thing that stress due to lack of sleep might have been the biggest factor in any aberrant behaviour from the heavy metal mice.

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      • Hi Bubba

        According to this study mice were split into three groups. Exposed to music 10 hours a day. They were in individual cages this time. At the end of the experiment he put them in for quiet time for one week to give them a vacation he called it and calm them down. When he put them together to take them to the pet store, the heavy metal mice started fighting amongst themselves again.

        https://www.facts-are-facts.com/article/music-and-psyche-crippling-rhythms-and-murderous-mice#.Vt1F8Zx95hE

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      • If we are going to the cage, I want to go dressed up like Mad Max with one of those metal garden fork thingos over my head. Hopefully I won’t get the classical music.

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      • 😆 Funny! Thanks for the laugh. Good medicine. What’s that Scripture verse—a merry heart doth?

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      • If we’re going all mad max in a cage then I’d have to vote for thunderdome

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      • Hey Dom,

        Road Warriors aside, if somebody did run an experiment on mice as described above I think you’d have a good case for a prosecution on animal cruelty.

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  3. What sort of heavy metal were the mice exposed to? Classic British metal (Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, etc)? NWOBHM? Iron Maiden, Motorhead? Thrash (early Metallica? Megadeth? Slayer? Prog metal? I have heard/ read about some studies the effects of heavy jetal on nature, but they never say what type/ genre or band/s. There’s a wide range.

    I remember when I was a kid, I used to hate ANY mention of heavy metal. Then I realised that there was such a wide range of sub – genres and some are just brilliant! Deep Purple, Iron Maiden, Ozzy Osbourne (post – Sabbath), Bon Jovi, Quiet Riot, they all habe great songs! Or docthey say that all metal sub – genres are bad for nature?

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      • Good point. I guess it depends whether you call ‘hair bands’ metal. I just thought they may have fit the ‘glam/ hair’ metal bands in the eighties, but maybe not.

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      • Yeah hair bands do easily segue into glam metal, Europe and Van Halen some other examples.

        Can be hard to categorise sometimes. ACDC for example always describe themselves as a rock band, not a metal band.

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  4. Crowder—COME AS YOU ARE

    Come out of sadness
    From wherever you’ve been
    Come broken hearted
    Let rescue begin
    Come find your mercy
    Oh sinner come kneel
    Earth has no sorrow
    That heaven can’t heal
    Earth has no sorrow
    That heaven can’t heal

    So lay down your burdens
    Lay down your shame
    All who are broken
    Lift up your face
    Oh wanderer come home
    You’re not too far
    So lay down your hurt
    Lay down your heart
    Come as you are

    There’s hope for the hopeless
    And all those who’ve strayed
    Come sit at the table
    Come taste the grace
    There’s rest for the weary
    Rest that endures
    Earth has no sorrow
    That heaven can’t cure

    So lay down your burdens
    Lay down your shame
    All who are broken
    Lift up your face
    Oh wanderer come home
    You’re not too far
    So lay down your hurt
    Lay down your heart
    Come as you are
    Come as you are
    Fall in his arms
    Come as you are
    There’s joy for the morning
    Oh sinner be still
    Earth has no sorrow
    That heaven can’t heal
    Earth has no sorrow
    That heaven can’t heal

    So lay down your burdens
    Lay down your shame
    All who are broken
    Lift up your face
    Oh wanderer come home
    You’re not too far
    So lay down your hurt
    Lay down your heart
    Come as you are
    Come as you are
    Come as you are

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