Music is richly organized into lexical networks of musical meaning Peretz et al. One suggestion is that the left hemisphere, especially the superior region and surface of the temporal lobe Heschl's gyrus , is tied to speech, and the right side is tied more to tone Peretz et al.
In two studies, for instance, the gray matter in the right cortical area was significantly greater in musicians Keenan et al. Variations in Heschl's gyrus in the left and right hemispheres across three different groups Schneider et al. The premotor regions and the anticipatory cephalic organization of human action are linked throughout to musical expression. Neural action between premotor regions, auditory systems, and motor output are pervasive in musical expression and the organization of action Zatorre, ; Patel, ; Koelsch, The dorsal premotor region in particular is knotted to metrical musical sensibilities Zatorre, Left Interaction of the auditory and motor systems during musical performance, and right associated premotor region changes in trained vs.
The neural correlates of musical exposure and practice indicate that music affects a broad array of human functioning, and that our cortex is built to receive music, process it, and change based on this exposure. These changes occur across neurological domains such that music affects pathways of audition, speech, language, memory, motor expression, and more.
These neuronal changes demonstrate the importance of music to human functioning and how broadly it impacts our structural anatomy, as well as our behavior and social functioning in the world. Music makes clear that there is no mind-body separation. The rhythmicity of the brain, along with the development of cognitive capabilities, illustrates clear how inherent music is to our evolutionary and social success.
This social link demonstrates that biological and cultural evolution are intertwined in music. Based on this, we can predict that imagining music and listening to music would activate many of the same brain regions, which indeed it does. Additionally, music facilitates social contact and would therefore be linked to an expanding cortex, which indeed, cortical expansion it. We could further predict that music would contribute to social cooperative behaviors, and that genetic syndromes like Williams syndrome, with exaggerated social approach behaviors, would also reveal a greater propensity for music, a fundamental prosocial feature.
Biologically, oxytocin, a prosocial facilitating peptide, may be elevated in Williams syndrome. Like dopamine, oxytocin may be elevated in listening to music. Music emerged as part of communicative capability, a universal feature long noted and discussed Juslin and Sloboda, ; Cross, Like language, the roots of music may be in the inherent shared features of our social brain, allowing us to communicate with others. Since its development, music has filled many other important roles for humans. Music is a fundamental part of our evolution; we probably sang before we spoke in syntactically guided sentences Mithen, , ; c.
Pinker, Song is not surprisingly tied to a vast array of semiotics that pervade nature: calling attention to oneself, expanding oneself, selling oneself, deceiving others, reaching out to others, and calling on others. Ian Cross, a professor at the faculty of music at Cambridge University, has noted that facilitating the transmission of information across shared social intentional space is the pervasive social milieu; evolutionary factors are critical in understanding musical sensibility Cross, , specifying diverse social contexts in relationships.
We use music because it expands our communicative social contact with one another. We also enjoy music even without obvious instrumental features. Music, like other features about us, became a worthy end for its own sake. Music is about communication; our evolutionary ascent is the scaling of communicative competence, tracing constants of musical sensibilities to common points of origins of humanity and expansion of musical expression from this common source in prehistorical times Grauer, But musical expression is about much more than that.
Musical sensibility pervades our social space and our origins in synchrony with our interactions with others that are built on core biological propensities Brown et al. A series of steps set the condition for this core capability in our species. A change in the vocal apparatus, leading to a larynx of a certain size, shape, and flexibility, is but one example.
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A vocal capability tied to social awareness along with other cephalic capabilities, converged together in behavioral coherence. The evolutionary record suggests that musical instruments were perhaps well expressed over 50, years ago in simple flutes and pipes Cross, ; Morley, and were depicted in our art e. What began as an extension of communication in a social context became something greater, which was enjoyed in itself. Our evolution is tightly bound to music and to the body as an instrument e.
Music, amongst other things, helps to facilitate social cooperative and coordinated behaviors Brown, Music permeates the brain as a core feature, from pitch and rhythm to tempo and affect Patel, The melodies dance across our brain, memory guides them through our lives, and the tension and release, or resolution, form an outstanding aspect of the experience of many forms of music and neural processing of events Steinbeis and Koelsch, The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.
National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Journal List Front Neurosci v. Front Neurosci. Published online Sep Raglan 2. Greta B. Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. This article was submitted to Evolutionary Psychology and Neuroscience, a section of the journal Frontiers in Neuroscience. Received Mar 28; Accepted Aug The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author s or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice.
No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms. Abstract Music is a core human experience and generative processes reflect cognitive capabilities. Keywords: music, evolution, social capability, cognitive capability, communication. Background Music is a fundamental part of our evolution; we probably sang before we spoke in syntactically guided sentences.
The social functions of music Music is often functional because it is something that can promote human well-being by facilitating human contact, human meaning, and human imagination of possibilities. Social and musical contact and cortical expansion Music is replete with social contact. Open in a separate window. Figure 1.
Williams syndrome, music and pro-social behaviors Williams Syndrome is a genetic exaggerated pro-social orientation to the world, linked to the dysregulation of oxytocin that is tied to diverse forms of pro-social behaviors Dai et al. Table 1 Various features of Autistic and Williams patients. Figure 3. Adaptation, evolution, and music From simple percusives to facile musical instruments, the tools of music represent a small leap for humankind. Figure 4. Figure 5. Action, music, and the brain Given the key role that music plays in our social world, it is perhaps not surprising that music activates broad neurological systems, and that cognitive structures are in place for receiving, understanding, and producing music.
Table 2 Relationships that underlie all aspects of musical experience. Figure 6. Figure 7. Dopamine, neural circuits, and music Dopamine is a central organizer of drives and rewards and is tied to music sensibilities imagined, acted, and expected Zatorre and Salimpoor, Figure 8. Figure 9. Figure Conclusions Music makes clear that there is no mind-body separation. Conflict of interest statement The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest. References Bangert M.
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The evolution of music and human social capability
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Effort: A Neurobiological Perspective on the Will. Cognitive Adaptation: A Pragmatist Perspective. The Musical Mind. Essays: Scientific, Political, and Speculative , Vol. Music training and vocal production of speech and song. Music Percept. This plays off of the modern cultural phenomenon that people love to be the first to discover something new. This is why the teaser technique works so well: it builds anticipation for a release that, in turn, boosts the success of the launch.
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This increases the initial success of the song, making it more likely to grow on its own. The Harlem Shake video craze was undeniable: it spread like wildfire in a matter of 48 hours and saturated all aspects of culture. But how did it all happen? What made the Harlem Shake and the Harlem Shake videos so special? The song was initially successful, garnering moderate support from the DJ community. His initial video got support from the major electronic music blogs, and he immediately followed up with different versions of the Harlem Shake video.
So when people saw the Harlem Shake, they made their own version. A lot of them. Really quickly. From there, you all know the rest. First off, as mentioned above, the concept of the Harlem Shake video was simple, creative, and easily replicated. What made this video trend stand out is it showed people they could make one too.
But anyone who watches a Harlem Shake video has the means to replicate it. In my opinion, the original video creators could have chosen a similar song and been just as successful. In other words: Baauer got lucky. First off, Baauer made a catchy, quality song in its own right that earned a release on Mad Decent. He put himself out there to even have a chance to be selected in that first Harlem Shake video.
The Mannequin Challenge was a viral video trend in where people remained frozen like mannequins while the camera moved through the crowd. The trend started when people mostly high schoolers began creating these videos with the hashtag MannequinChallenge. So how did Black Beatles become the official Mannequin Challenge anthem?
A forward thinking and perfectly timed marketing campaign. They saw an opportunity to pair Black Beatles with the movement, and did everything in their power to do so. Once they got enough traction, the connection was made, and the official challenge anthem was set. After the last section, you can see the power social influences have on the virality of a song. This is exactly what happened with London producer Oshi. But after that tweet and the coverage thereafter, the song exploded, currently sitting at a cool 20 million plays.
There are a few factors that made this event possible. First, Oshi was able to get his music into the hands of a powerful social influencer Lorde , either directly or indirectly. Second, he was able to capitalize on that support with the extended blog coverage that associated him with an established artist.
Blogs regularly do this. They do it because it works, and if you can, you should too. Keep an eye out for opportunities you can capitalize on. If a large artist, celebrity, or blog supports you, then think about how you can sell that association. Further, put yourself in situations where support like this is possible. Social influencers have the ability to launch careers, so look for opportunities to put your music in front of them.
Marshmello is one of few electronic artists that has reached ultra-mainstream success in the recent years he is currently the 8 highest paid DJ of His meteoric rise to success is unmatched by other electronic artists, and his brand has become a staple in the industry. One reason is the strength and consistency of his brand. The helmet, the artwork, and the music all fit the same theme. The consistency and power of his brand helped fans identify with him right from the start, making his path to the mainstream a lot shorter.
For most artists, their brand evolves. They try new styles, images, and personas until they find a brand that sticks. So how did Marshmello have his brand right from the start? Dotcom has been active and releasing for at least the past 5 years. When he launched the Marshmello project, he had two tools in his arsenal: experience and connections. Since he had experience in the electronic music industry, Marshmello knew how to navigate it.
Furthermore, his connections made his rise exceptionally fast. Before the Marshmello project started, he had several successful years in the industry, which came after years of perfecting his craft.