It’s 2006 now. I was listening to my iPod on the school bus when Johnny Cash’s “Hurt.” The song begins softly, with a wistful Cash singing of loss and regret over a sparse acoustic pluck.
As a freshman in high school, I didn’t know anything about the song’s mature old-and-death theme. But halfway through the song, something happened. The volume of the guitar and piano increased, and Cash’s voice began to increase. I feel like the hair is standing on the back of my neck. A warm shiver crept up my spine and goosebumps appeared on my arms. It feels as if something important is going on. I don’t know what exactly.But something is coming.
And I was looking forward to the moment when the song would taper off, like it did in the previous chorus…it didn’t. Cash’s voice howled over the percussion of the piano and guitar, which would probably blow up my headphones.
Suddenly, my body was enveloped by an electric current of ecstasy; my heart was buoyed by an indescribable fusion of ecstasy, awe, despair, and longing. Instantly, I realized something in my bones:
This is what it feels like to be alive.
There’s a word that describes this universal human response to music – it means “the moment” when a song penetrates your body and soul.It’s called “frisson,” which is why music from seemingly disparate artists like Johnny Cash, Metallica, Celine Dion, and Mozart are featured on recently released, science-backed songs For the reasons on the list, the researchers claim the songs may give people “chills.” This 715 song playlist Curated by a team of neuroscientists, available on Spotify.
“FrissonDerived from French, it is “a feeling or sensation of sudden excitement, emotion or stimulation”, an experience that is not limited to music. Historically, frisson has been used interchangeably with the term “aesthetic chill”.
according to a Learning in 2019tremors can be experienced when gazing at a gorgeous sunset or a beautiful painting; when a deep insight or truth is realized; when reading a particularly resonant verse; or when watching a movie climax.
researchers often describe A frisson is a “piloerection” (or “skin orgasm”) and states that the experience retains a “physical and psychological component” similar to orgasm. Some people refer to frisson as “delightful goosebumps,” while others argue that Definition should be expanded “Include other appreciable, non-skin reactions such as tears, a lump in the throat, and muscle tension/looseness.”
Appreciation of beauty is known to be central to what makes us human, but it is Researchers don’t know What evolutionary advantage does this sensitivity give our species.this current consensus Is it related to what we need to know about our environment:
“Aesthetic chill corresponds to the satisfaction of the inner human drive to acquire knowledge about the external world and to perceive objects and situations as meaningful. In humans, the need to explore and understand environmental conditions is a biological prerequisite for survival.”
What causes tremors?
In his 2006 book sweet expectation, Musicologist David Huron provides a compelling explain Why do we react so strongly to music. He called it “the theory of valence,” in which sensory states are strongly influenced by contrast.
“If we feel bad at first and then feel good, then Good feelings are often stronger than good experiences that occurred without the previous bad feelings. This is due to a conditioning process called “cognitive evaluation,” in which our brains use cognitive and language processes to redefine the meaning of stimuli. Huron illustrates this phenomenon with the idea of a surprise party :
“When a person is surprised by her friend, the first reaction is fear: her eyelids retract, her jaw drops. But within half a second, the fear is replaced by joyful celebration as the person recognizes Out of her friends and the positive social significance of the event.”
According to Huron, when the assessment response confirms no Threat, contrast valence converts negative emotions into positive emotions.
Consider Metallica’s “Puppet Master” (one of three Metallica songs on the featured playlist). It’s understandable if your immediate emotional reaction to the song’s shocking introduction is one of fear and foreboding. But thanks to “cognitive reappraisal,” that initial rush of adrenaline can turn into something positive when you realize you’re safe and it’s the music that makes you feel that way.
Also, notice how this experience relates to our brains expected. This is the same as Huron in sweet expectation, It builds on ideas popularized by renowned music psychologist Leonard Meyer.
Emotional force against expectations
according to a article exist Frontiers in Psychology“Violations of expectations (e.g., harmony, rhythm, and/or melody violations) are closely related to the onset of musical tremors, so some degree of anticipation violation may be a prerequisite.”
Our minds evolved to predict future outcomes to ensure our survival, always predicting how something will play out. When our initial prediction is wrong, we can feel anything from anger to surprise to shudder, depending on the situation.
Thinking back on my experience listening to Johnny Cash, it’s the moment when the song “exceeds my expectations” that makes me shudder.When I expected the song to taper off, it intensified. And, as discussed in Huron’s book, most reliable indicator The trembling of music is an increase in loudness.
Other reliable indicators include input of one or more instruments or sounds; sudden changes in rhythm or rhythm; a new or unexpected harmony; and sudden modulation.music psychologist john sloboda established The most common type of phrase that causes tremors is “a chord progression from the fifth circle down to the tonic”. This is a deeply influential chord progression common in many of Mozart’s works.
Some researchers have also noticed how “human screams” can cause musical tremors. Huron wrote:
“The adult scream displays a disproportionate amount of energy in the broad 0-6 kHz region where human hearing is best. Human screams are the furthest distance humans can hear sound.”
Nothing is more powerful (or traumatic) than a human scream and Professor William O. Beeman in his work make grown men crynotice how professional singers (especially opera singers) take advantage of this auditory sensitivity.
Think Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” or Adele’s “Hello” or John Lennon’s Scream in The Beatles’ “Twist & Shout” (all of which are on the playlist). Or listen to Merry Clayton’s legendary backing vocals on The Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter.”
On YouTube, there is a clip Movies from 2013 20 feet from the star One of Clayton’s tracks is isolated. If you browse the comments section, you’ll see that a lot of people cite Clayton’s voice as the reason the song is so powerful — especially when she’s screaming “murder” her voice breaks unexpectedly. Her howls are activating our primal responses.
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It should be noted that there are many different disciplines outside of evolutionary biology that offer convincing explanations for flutter, ranging from anthropology (Janet Bicknell Why music moves us) to Ethnomusicology (Judith Becker Deep audience) to a psychosocial study of “emotional contagion” (“Towards a Unified Theory of Musical Emotions” by Patrik Juslin).
And Huron’s “Comparison Theory” can help us better understand what’s going on behind the scenes when we experience this deep emotional state.
By stimulating and leveraging our primitive threat detection systems, music can activate deeply embedded neural networks that have evolved over millions of years. No wonder we feel so deeply at the heart of the song: the music reminds us of what it’s like to be alive.