The Roots And Genre Of Soul Music

What do Barry White, Marvin Gaye, The Emotions, and Luther Vandrose, have in common with Aretha Franklin, Patti Labelle, Whitney Houston, and Chaka Khan?  Soul is what they have in common, deep-rhythmic blues and vocals that can have you testifying, crying, or shouting out.  Soul music that touches deep into your being is what those artist and many more have in common.

When was the last time you listened to some good old soul music, sat back, allow it to take you to another place, released your mind and body, and allowed your soul to be touched?  If you can’t recall it is time you got back in touch with some rare soul grooves.

Soul music is a well-liked approach to music created back in the 50’s by influential artist like Ray Charles with his music and songs like “I’ve Got A Woman” “Confession Blues”, “Baby, Let Me Hold Your Hand”, Little Richard with “Tutti Frutti” “Long Tall Sally”, “Good Golly, Miss Molly”) and James Brown  with his “Please, Please, Please”, “Try Me”).  The sultry blend of gospel with rhythm, blues, and beats began the birth of soul music.  Some found this early music almost disrespectful, as depicted in the biopic film Ray.  Soul music didn’t take real fast amongst the majority of gospel fearing crowd as they felt it was a disrespect to sing in a gospel manner while singing about love, women, and good times, however, soul music began to fill the airwaves and make a definite strong impact on the world of music.

The gospel music that concurred to the soul melted with the early rock and roll and rhythm and blues quickly started reaching top chart hits.  Record companies couldn’t move fast enough to sign on soul music artist like Aretha Franklin the “Queen of Soul” (“Rock-A-Bye Your Baby”, “Today I Sing The Blues”, “Won’t Be Long” and “Operation Heartbreak”) Solomon Burke (“Cry to Me”, “Just Out of Reach” and “Down in the Valley”),Otis Redding (“These Arms of Mine”, “Mr. Pitiful”, “I Can’t Turn You Loose” “Try a Little Tenderness” “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay”) and many more.

Since the 50’s and 60’s era of rare soul music, many new subgenres of soul music has arose such as the Detroit (Motown) soul, Deep soul and Southern soul, Memphis, New Orleans, Chicago and Philadelphia soul.  There is also the Neo soul, Nu-Jazz, and soulful electronica, as well as ppsychedelic soul.  Psychedelic soul blends a mix of soul music with a touch of psychedelic rock.  This genre of soul music made its debut in the late 60’s and opened the doors to what we know now as funk music.

In the mid 60’s and early 70’s many white artist started emerging the Motown and Sax sounds into their music which started the blue-eyed soul genre.  Kenny G would be a great example of a blue-eyed soul musician describing his use of the rhythm and blues sound attached with the sax.  The terms northern soul and modern soul became common terminology in the 70’s in reference to the nightclubs that were made popular by DJ’s playing rare soul music from their root beginnings.  Each subgenre has each own purpose and its own unique sound that makes them special yet holds true to what is known as soul music.  .

Check Out the Latest in Naija Music Videos

Take a look at the latest Naija music videos for some of the most amazing tunes put to video format that you’ve ever seen. You won’t be disappointed.

In the music world, things change every day. What was once popular will eventually end up a part of music history. There is one great way to immortalize your music, and that’s to make a video. Music videos really bring the stories behind the songs to life in a more visual way. One great genre of music that is known throughout the world for lyrics, tunes, and most of all videos, is that of Naija music. Born in Nigeria, this music will have you on your feet and dancing like you’ve never danced before.

The great thing about Naija music videos is that there’s always a new one coming out. They put out songs and videos like birds put out tweets. And each new song makes a powerful new statement, each stronger and more upbeat than the last. Most of Naija music will give you a sort of hip hop and dance vibe, but some has more of an R&B type sound. All of it is definitely made for getting your moves on. And the videos do not disappoint. Check out some of the latest Naija music videos online and see what the fuss is all about.

With Naija music videos, it’s like these record companies are always on the lookout for something new and exciting. Each video features something crazier than the last. The music and sound effects are amazing. The costumes and “extras” are fabulous. Naija keeps it hot with these videos. They’re always ahead of every other genre of music with their awesome beats and sick tunes. But the music videos they come up with are so far ahead of any other type of music. Have a look for yourself, and you won’t be disappointed.

If you’re growing tired of the same old workout tunes and would love to find something new to enjoy while you walk off those pounds on the treadmill, do a quick search for the latest Naija music videos on your mobile device, and you’ll be enjoying some of the greatest music videos you’ve ever laid eyes on. These fast paced tunes will also help you pick up your own pace and will keep you motivated and on top of your game throughout your entire workout. Have a long commute using public transportation. Throw some headphones in your bag and enjoy these videos while your bus or cab carries you to your destination.

Don’t be afraid to give new types of music a try. Just because you’ve always been a punk rock or a country fan, doesn’t mean there’s not something else out there you’ll enjoy entirely. Naija music is hip and upbeat and will have you moving to the beat before you even realize what’s happening. And these videos are for everyone who enjoys music at all. If you’ve ever watched the music video countdown on any major music television network and enjoyed them at all, then you’re really in for a treat when you check out the latest Naijia music videos online.

Effects of Music on the Mind

The study of how music affects the mind has been a subject of interest for many. The interconnection between music and the physical and mental health of human beings has been researched on since long. Research has concluded that music does have positive effects on our mind. It has the power of healing certain ailments. Indian classical music has been found to have the strongest healing powers. Music has a calming effect on the mind. It is known to speed the recovery of health ailments. It helps fight anxiety and has a soothing effect on the brain.
Effects of Music on the Mental State
Fights Depression
Feeling depressed, gloomy or inadequate? Soothing music can help you. Depression reduces brain activity and hampers the mind’s ability to plan and carry out tasks. Lack of the neurotransmitter Serotonin, results in a depressed state of mind. Soothing musical notes help increase the Serotonin levels of the brain, thus alleviating mental depression. Natural musical notes are known to make the mind alert.

Relieves Anxiety
Anxiety is a feeling of fear or uncertainty that clouds your mind and the feeling is mostly about an upcoming event having an unknown outcome. The result is what you are afraid of or worried about. Increased anxiety levels and stress lead to sleeplessness. Prolonged periods of anxiety may even lead to anxiety disorders. But music can come to rescue. It calms the body nerves and soothes the mind. Flat musical notes induce sleep.
Improves Learning Abilities
Music affects the process of learning and thinking. Listening to quiet and soothing music while working helps you work faster and in a more efficient way. Music has the ability to make you positive and feel motivated. Research has shown that music brings about remarkable improvements in the academic skills of students, who are made to listen to certain kinds of music while studying or working in the lab. Listening to pleasant music, while doing a difficult task, can make it seem easier.
Boosts Confidence
Music has a positive effect on the interpersonal skills of an individual. Lack of confidence and very less or no desire to learn is most often the reason behind a failure. It’s not always inability. Students obtaining poor school grades do not necessarily lack intelligence. It’s their disinterest in the subjects or the lack of motivation that leads to poor academic performance. Music lessons during school can help the students fight their mental block. Music proves helpful in encouraging young children to venture new fields. It increases their capacity to believe in themselves, that is, in boosting confidence.
Effects of Music on the Brain
Increases Concentration Levels, Improves Memory
It is known that music helps increase your concentration levels. It helps improve memory. It has been found to increase memory levels of Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Research has shown that the silence between two musical notes triggers brain cells which are responsible for the development of sharp memory. Flute music, and instruments like santoor and sarod are recommended for the enhancement of concentration and memory. Classical music improves the ability to recall what’s retained in the brain in the form of memory. Strong beats cause the brain waves to resonate in synch with the beat, thus leading to increased levels of concentration and increased mental alertness. This also trains the brain to change speeds of processing easily, as need be. Learning music helps increase self-discipline.

Increases Creativity and Problem-solving Skills
Music plays a vital role in enhancing creativity. Music has a positive impact on the right side of the brain. Music triggers brain centers which deal with the enhancement of creativity. Certain ragas are known to activate the chakras of our body, thus giving us an added advantage in other creative tasks. Music increases spatial and abstract reasoning skills. These are the skills required in tackling problems, solving puzzles and taking decisions. Listening to Mozart’s music is known to have a positive effect on the spatial-temporal reasoning, simply put, it makes you smarter.
Makes Learning Easier
Have you tried learning anything by combining it with music or rhythm? For example, counting with a certain repeating pattern, or learning the alphabet by giving it a tune. Or remember learning poetry by reciting it musically? Didn’t that help you learn things faster? Basically you can remember songs because they are musical compositions and not plain words lacking music or rhythm. This is what music does. It makes learning easier. Learning beat patterns (talas), helps improve math skills. The study of rhythm is known to help students learn math. Music stimulates the brain centers that deal with thinking, analyzing and planning, thus enhancing one’s organizational skills.
Speeds Healing
Music helps in the secretion of endorphins that help in speeding the process of healing. It acts as an effective distraction from pain and suffering. It not only diverts the mind from pain, but also helps bring about certain chemical changes in the brain that help speed the healing process. Music therapy is recommended for patients of high blood pressure, heart diseases and even cancer. Music is therapeutic in pain management. Listening to melodious, comforting music is sure to have a positive effect on the physical and mental well-being of patients. If not cure every ailment, music definitely creates hope in the minds of patients – a hope to recover. And when nothing else works, only hope does.
How does Music Affect your Mood?
Some look at music as a hobby; for some music is their passion, while some pursue music as their career. Music has a direct influence on your mood. Book stores, restaurants and shopping malls often keep some music playing in the background. The kind of music they choose to play depends on the kind of audiences they target. Music is found to enhance customer experience. Music in malls and restaurants peps up customers’ mood. People tend to spend more time in the mall or hotel that plays pleasant music. Music brightens up the atmosphere around you and cheers you up. Music can make you cry, music can make you smile; it has a direct impact on your mood. How music affects your mood also depends on what you associate that piece of music with. A tune or a particular song that is in some way related to your childhood can bring back memories. A song you associate something or someone in your life with, can remind you of that person or thing.
Negative Effects that Music Can Have
For music to have positive effects on the mind and brain, it should be complex enough to involve brain activity. It should be synchronous and generate sound waves that are in tune with the body’s internal rhythm. It should be played at a volume the listeners’ ears can accept and should have regular beats to have any good effects on the body and mind rhythm and functioning. Here are some of the negative effects of music.
Very loud music can disturb the symmetry between the right and left halves of the brain. Loud music results in a disturbed state of mind. Exposure to harsh or disruptive music at an early age can lead to learning disabilities and behavior problems in children.
According to a study by Dr. John Diamond, an Australian physician and psychiatrist, body muscles go weak when subjected to the stopped anapestic beat in hard rock music. He also says that shrill frequencies and irregular beats are harmful to the mind and body.
Disharmony in music has been shown to reduce retention levels of the brain and lead to aggression and hyperactivity.
Heavily repeating musical patterns can lead to feelings of anger and boredom.

So, the effects music can have on your mind or brain depend largely on the kind of music you choose to listen to. To experience positive psychological effects of music, you should listen to only good music. A sound which spells melody is good music. It’s the sound that has the power of creating a calm. That’s the magic of music, I think. Listening to music gives me divine pleasure. What about you?

How Does Music Affect the Brain

Inside Your Brain!
A study was conducted to track patient’s ratings of their own anxiety. Before undergoing a surgery, they were randomly assigned to listen to music or take antianxiety pills.
The Outcome: Patients who listened to music had less anxiety compared to those who took pills.
Music has been an integral part of the human lifestyle from a long time. It is believed to have been a part of civilizations which existed 50,000 years ago. It is very interesting to note that music evolved as a means of expression, and hence, generally reflects the social, economic, environmental, religious, and other aspects related to humans. Thus, music was, and still is, a way to express a range of emotions and feelings. This process, in itself, has a great relieving effect and works wonders for the peaceful operation of the brain. When the mental faculty is provided a vent for its restless thought process, it automatically boosts the functioning of the brain and conclusively of all the other body processes.

Brain development is a method of training the thought process in such a way that it maintains proper working. There are two possible ways to understand the effect of music on the brain, namely general observation and scientific approach.
Effects of Music – General Observation

Universally Liked
The most important observation in this regard is that everybody likes some type of music. The fact that it is ‘liked’ by every person has a psychological effect on their mind. This makes music all the more loved! Moreover, music is seen to impart a pleasurable experience to the listener. When one listens to music, a part of the brain called the ventral striatum releases dopamine, which makes the experience pleasurable.

Music has a calming effect on our minds. During times of depression or anxiety, listening to music helps relieve our stress. People often de-stress themselves after a long day by listening to soothing music. The effect of music on the brain is analogous to spraying water on a dusty and hot land. Just as water settles the dust in the air, music acts as though layering the innumerable thoughts clogging your brain, thus de-stressing you.

Elevates and Energizes
Listening to music elevates one’s mood. It energizes a tired person, which is evident from the spike in the energy levels observed as a result of listening to one’s favorite music. Music influences one’s mood, and different kinds of music trigger different moods in people. For example, in a spa, soothing music is played, whereas in a pub, loud music is played. Both provide pleasure, but the kind of pleasure and mood generated is different. Music can calm your nerves and even make you go wild!

Alleviates Memorizing
Music is known to facilitate the learning process. This is why music is such an integral part in school. Children can easily grasp information in the form of a song. Even older students make their own little songs to remember difficult portions for their exams. Thus, music helps improve one’s memory and grasping power.

Exercise Motivator
There’s a strong association between fast-paced music and effective exercising. Music helps you take your mind off your aching muscles and motivates you to continue working out. The heart too, gets on to the music beats, making it easy for you to exercise to the fast music. Thus, thanks to music, your workout is transformed into a fun experience.

Promotes Immune Response
Cheerful music beats boost your immune system. How? The hypnosis or mental state created by these music beats sends the brain into an alpha state, where endorphins (happy hormones) are released. Thus, listening to soothing music is the simplest way to boost your immune response.

Creates a Meditative State
Since the time man existed, music has been a constituent of religious and spiritual traditions. For some, simply listening to spiritual music connects them with a higher power. Also, chanting hymns or drumming rhythmically takes you to an altered but alert cognitive state in which you are aware of yourself and your situation. People have been practicing this for thousands of years now as it helps them reach a trance-like meditative state.
Effects of Music – Scientific Observation

Serotonin Levels Upped
Problems like excessive worry, anxiety, or depression create a chaotic situation in the brain; it hampers its working power, reasoning ability, and execution of conventional tasks becomes difficult. It happens because of reduced levels of serotonin. Fifty million brain cells are affected by the levels of serotonin. Music effects a steep rise in the levels of serotonin, which has positive influences on brain cells controlling mood. Thus, music is often used to treat anxiety disorders.

Better Language Skills
Music therapy is used to help improve language skills in autistic children as well as enable them to express themselves more effectively. Music helps them communicate better, as these children often use songs to communicate. However, the extent to which music therapy is beneficial is not yet known. Autistic children are sensitive to sounds, but most respond positively to music.

Memory Recall
The words of a song and the tune often bring back memories, which even the brain seems to have forgotten. Every song has certain memories of fun and frolic or sorrow associated with it. However, the point is, songs are linked strongly to memories and playing the same songs again brings back certain memories to patients with Alzheimer’s. Thus, music therapy is used for patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Music Therapy
In this intervention, music therapists chiefly help clients improve their health across various spheres. Music is used as a sanative to address the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of a person. The intervention is designed to manage stress, relieve pain, promote wellness, express feelings, and promote physical rehabilitation among others. Music therapy is also found to be very effective in treating seizures, depression, ADD, insomnia, or conditions, like premature infancy.

Passive Listening and Music Training
Research conducted by Laurel Trainor (Director of the Institute for Music and the Mind at McMaster University in West Hamilton, Ontario) and his colleagues reveal that there is a difference between just passively listening to music, and being musically trained to play an instrument. The researchers found that children who
received training in some form showed greater brain responses as compared to those who just listen to music on a regular basis. They also go on to say that music training enhances a child’s concentration span and retaining capacity. This means that music training also helps cognitive functions, like learning and perception. Younger children who are given musical training are seen to develop motor, verbal, and non-verbal skills faster. However, this research was limited to children and did not extend to adults.
If knowledge is food for thought, music is the digestive system that makes sure that it is assimilated in a proper way. Music acts a great motivator, keeps you in a good mood, and although the jury is still out on this, listening to music surely doesn’t harm you. Simply venture out to the nearest coffee place that plays soft music or visit a loud club. The effect would be pretty clear!

How to Learn Music Notes Fast

Okay, I assume that you are a music enthusiast or an aspiring newbie musician who wants to learn music notes. Well, in this article, I will explain a bit regarding the procedure to learn music notes, using the reference of a musical instrument such as a guitar or a piano keyboard.

Please note: I will not be dealing with the topic of how to learn music notation. That, by far, is a very complex subject, and one which is certainly out of the scope of this article. Reading and writing music is something that you should learn on a personal level, i.e., on a face-to-face basis from a proper music teacher; not by yourself, and certainly NOT over the Internet.

In reality, if you really want to study music notes properly and understand them thoroughly, then the first thing you need to do, is get rid of that word ‘fast’ from your head, this very moment. The reason is, basic primary learning of musical notes may well be accomplished within a few minutes time; but if you want to perfect your knowledge and your art, then it requires nothing but consistent practice and long hours of sincere hard work.

Learning Music Notes for a Guitar
The acoustic guitar has six strings, namely, E, B, G, D, A and E (low). Here is a table which shows the different music notes corresponding to each fret on each guitar string.

String Open Fret 1 Fret 2 Fret 3 Fret 4 Fret 5 Fret 6 Fret 7 Fret 8 Fret 9 Fret 10 Fret 11 Fret 12
E (high) E F F# G G# A A# B C C# D D# E (next octave)
B B C C# D D# E F F# G G# A A# B (next octave)
G G G# A A# B C C# D D# E F F# G (next octave)
D D D# E F F# G G# A A# B C C# D (next octave)
A A A# B C C# D D# E F F# G G# A (next octave)
E (low) E F F# G G# A A# B C C# D D# E (next octave)

Learning Music Notes for a Piano
The traditional piano as well as all its modern forms such as the piano keyboard, synthesizer, etc. have a bunch of black and white keys. If you observe the key layout, you will notice that the black keys are grouped in two’s and three’s with white keys in between them. Starting from the left black key in the group of two, and moving ahead one key at a time till we reach the left black key in the very next group of two, here are the corresponding music notes for each piano key.

Key Music Note
First Black C#
First White D
Second Black D#
Second White E
Third White F
Third Black F#
Fourth White G
Fourth Black G#
Fifth White A
Fifth Black A#
Sixth White B
Seventh White C
First Black (next octave) C#

Well, this was some basic information regarding music notes using a guitar and a keyboard. If you’re serious about becoming a good musician, you better prepare yourself to put in all those long hours of practice, because my friend, in life, there may be shortcuts; but in music, there aren’t any.

How Can Learning Jazz Improve a Classical Musician’s

“…Handel, Mozart, Beethoven, and Liszt all excelled in improvisation, which was then referred to as extemporization…”

Classical music is a sophisticated art form where talking during performances (much less to the musicians) is frowned upon. Yet in jazz, it is very common for the audience to speak to musicians during performances as a way of complimenting their improvisational skills.

Elements of jazz can be found in gospel, country, pop, R&B, movie soundtracks, and other musical forms. However, when the average person uses the word “jazz,” they may not understand the culture or the language.

Many people associate improvisation with jazz and vice-versa. However, improvisation has been an integral part of classical music history, stemming back to the medieval period in Gregorian chants. These chants used additional melodies above the Cantus Firmus (fixed melody in Latin), which were improvised by Medieval musicians to glorify God. In the later periods, improvisation was used in performances outside of churches. J.S. Bach, Handel, Mozart, Beethoven, and Liszt all excelled in improvisation, which was then referred to as extemporization. Bartok’s “Mikrokosmos” were originally improvised as were Beethoven’s famous sketch books (which he later used in formal works).

Near the beginning of the 20th Century, improvisation disappeared in the Romantic Period as performers began mastering composers’ works note for note; the art of improvisation was eventually lost. Schubert’s impromptus, contrary to their title, were not improvised but written out methodically. Playing classical music well is a skill requiring great discipline and talent, but the same can be said for jazz. Both disciplines use the same musical alphabet, yet have somehow managed to create different nomenclatures for each respectively.

Historically, jazz music has not been associated with higher education. However, the great Scott Joplin, an African-American jazz composer of the late 19th to early 20th century, took formal lessons with a classical German-born piano teacher and the Creole performers of New Orleans were often Conservatory-trained in Paris.

Both classical and jazz music are disciplines requiring creativity. The classical musician, after mastering the techniques must interpret the score and bring the written notes to life in a performance. The challenge of a jazz musician is to use, simultaneously, both improvisational talent and the technique required to perform unplanned music for a live audience. To draw an analogy, a classical musician is like an actor with a full script – having to memorize and master it, then bringing the character to life. A jazz musician is like an actor with no script, only a few guidelines to follow, yet charged with creating dialogue and instantly performing in character. In its purest essence, technicality must be mastered. One would argue that the task of learning and memorizing a sonata (15-60 pages) or concerto (often exceeding 100 pages) is a phenomenal task! The best classical and jazz musicians must both be proficient in technique, but the more challenging task is for them to able to augment their technical skills in a performance to move their audience emotionally. All musicians need to play from their hearts to truly affect their audience in a meaningful way.

Recently, Conservatory Canada has implemented a new examination category implementing jazz idioms, nomenclature and styles. The Royal Conservatory has for several years used a popular syllabus for their studies selection. In addition to the previously mentioned Jazz Studies program offered at Juilliard, Ivy League schools have also shown their support; Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, and Berkley currently offer or are implementing jazz programs. These institutions have embraced an original approach in combining classical and jazz instruction.

We cannot claim that one art form is more or less sophisticated than another. Classical musicians may not fully comprehend jazz culture, just as jazz musicians may not fully interpret classical culture. However, because music is a universal language, the understanding of its different forms and dialects are beneficial. These new “bilingual” musicians are able to better communicate with their audience in various ways. Following the same “early education” concept used for spoken languages, we need to educate children in both classical and jazz music. Children who study classical and jazz at the same time will be able to understand both cultures and fully realize their musical potential.

The Importance of Lyrics in a Song

Are lyrics important in a song? While you won’t see a lot of people discussing this issue, this is probably a question that comes up every once in a while. The question is not as stupid as it sounds-many actually claim that lyrics do not serve any important function to a song. After all, a song is music; and while the sound would be different without the lyrics, the experience shouldn’t be any different. There are people who listen to music for the sake of the sound, considering the lyrics as an exterior, an addition, instead as an integral part of the creation. But is this entirely true? Are lyrics really important?

Many would say yes for several reasons. For one, many listeners of music find the appeal of songs in the lyrics and not in the music. This is because they find the song lyrics “relatable.” By this, it means the listeners can connect with the song, perhaps because they have experienced the sentiments and narrative delivered by the lyrics. Lyrics as something relatable are usually applicable when the song lyrics are in the form of a narrative; or when the song lyrics tell a story, regardless if it is complete or incomplete. An example of this is Johnny Cash’s “A Boy Named Sue.” If the title itself doesn’t imply that the song is a narrative, the lyrics itself should make it very clear. For instance: “My daddy left home when I was three / And he didn’t leave much to ma and me / Just this old guitar and an empty bottle of booze. / Now, I don’t blame him cause he run and hid / But the meanest thing that he ever did / Was before he left, he went and named me ‘Sue.'” Of course, the lyrics of the song can be relatable even if it isn’t an all-out narrative. As all as the lyrics provide sentiments, anyone can relate to it.

One factor why people say lyrics aren’t essential in songs is dance music. Dance music has lyrics, of course, but their function isn’t as important as the sound of the song itself. For instance, there have been a number of dance songs that have lyrics in the foreign language. The lyrics of dance songs aren’t exactly nonsensical, but it is not given primary importance.

Lyrics also aim to inspire. This is essential true in gospel music and country music. Here, the sound doesn’t take a backseat-although the lyrics are given more importance. Gospel music, for instance, is a genre defined by the lyrics of the song since it is described as a genre that expresses Christian beliefs. Of course, lyrics also provide additional entertainment, especially when songs are performed in karaoke.

In short, lyrics make it easier for a song to express emotions and sentiments, feelings and intent. Music can provide and express emotions, but adding lyrics to a song definitely adds depth and texture to what would otherwise be plain and repetitive.

Does Music Help Us Sleep

Did You Know?
Max Richter’s ‘Sleep’ is a cradle song, termed as ‘my personal lullaby for a frenetic world’ by him. This eight-hour piece includes pieces that will take you into a trance-like state, and holds the record for being the longest live broadcasted composition of music.
It is a well-known fact that most Americans have trouble getting enough sleep. In fact, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), 40 millions Americans suffer from chronic sleep disorders. Sleep deprivation can have serious repercussions; it can affect memory, decision-making abilities, and overall mental health.

As babies, most of us went off into dreamland peacefully listening to lullabies. But can music help adults sleep as well? Well, the answer is yes, and no. Music may not make you sleep, but it can definitely help you sleep.
Music And Sleep
The International Journal of Nursing published a study of 557 adults suffering from sleep disorders. In this study, music was played when they were sleeping. Over a short period of time, improvement in the sleep quality of most individuals was seen. In certain cases, there was no significant difference. Such cases may need a longer study to get conclusive results. We can safely assume that, music doesn’t have any negative effort on sleep, and it is not an expensive option either.
How Music Benefits Sleep

If you find that getting enough shut-eye is difficult because you share a bedroom with a nocturnal sibling or noisy roommate, music might help you a lot. Grab your headphones, make a playlist of some sedative songs, and relax. You’ll forget all the annoying noises in the background and sleep like a baby.

Our heart starts beating on the rhythm of music. This uniform motion helps induce sleep. Which is why, listening to rock music or very fast songs is not recommended when trying to sleep. It’s better to go for classical, soft rock, or jazz music.

As we sleep, our body relaxes, temperature reduces, heartbeat slows down, and breathing becomes slower. Listening to music helps fall asleep as it mimics some of these effects. The heartbeat and breathing will slow down. As such, it induced sleep.

Listening to your favorite music triggers feel-good chemicals in the brain. This puts your mind at ease. Instrumental music is extremely helpful in distracting the mind from racing thoughts. Avoid music with a lot of lyrics, as these can stimulate certain thoughts. Just let go of all the unnecessary thoughts, envelope yourself in the beautiful rhythm, and drift away to snooze land.
The Kind of Music That Helps Sleep

The impact of music on sleep depends on the kind of music as well. Music has the power to sooth as well as excite. Music with lot of lyrics can distract the mind, so it’s best to opt for instrumental pieces. Classical, jazz, or downtempo music like Enigma can help you sleep faster. Choose the kind of music you enjoy.
Sleep Music for Babies

Listening to lullabies before sleeping is extremely relaxing for babies. They simply comfort them. This also strengthens the bond between parent and baby. Also, early exposure to music is beneficial, as it enhances brain development.

Guitar Players Super Glue Finger Tips

Here is an exclusive tip from the late great Stevie Ray Vaughan. Players like Stevie Ray bend strings use a playing technique where you bend the strings with your left hand, for right handed guitarists that is. It is part of the particular style of music most blues players use, which is a staple of blues guitar music.

Bending the guitar strings to change a note or tone is abusive to the fingertips of the fret hand. To put it mildly it is a lot of work to play this style.

Stevie Ray Vaughan used the largest gauge strings made, at least ones I am familiar with. Gauge size is .013″ to .056″, basically the same size as suspension bridge cable. I am a sissy, I use light gauge strings such as .009″ to .046″ gauge. Bending strings is quite common today, however there is a fairly serious problem that can occur from lots of guitar string bending that is not a guitar problem. It is more of a guitarists health problem.

The problem I want to address is cuts on your fingertips and or separation of the fingernail to the fingertip itself. I have had this problem occur, and more than enough guitar players who bend strings can testify to this problem.

What is the solution? Super Glue. Regardless of whether it is a cut or separation, a drop of super glue solves the problem. One small drop of glue on the cut or in the separation is plenty to let you finish your set or gig. Some players actually put a drop of glue under the nail before a long hi energy set/ gig starts. This is a mandatory tool to keep available, like in your gig bag or tool box.

Incidentally, super glue was invented and used in the medical field as ‘surgical cement’ for years before it became a house hold product. Particularly by orthopedists for bone repairs.

Super glue in general can be found almost anywhere. Because guitar players are specialists, there is a company that sells a unique super glue just for guitar players. Stewart-MacDonald sells a specialized super glue for repairing fingertips and damaged guitars and guitar parts. Keep a bottle handy, you will be glad to have it should it become necessary to fix a cut fingertip.

I don’t know for sure that Stevie Ray Vaughan was the first guitarist to figure out that super glue was great for this purpose, however, SRV is the only player I know of to have mentioned and discussed how he solved the issue.

Guitarists health issues are real. Most of them such as sore wrists and elbows, etc. can be searched on the internet for viable solutions. Many of the health problems specific to guitar players can be treated easily and painlessly, especially if attended to as soon as possible. Make health issues important. Don’t let them become emergencies.

Pros and Cons of Downloading Music

For most of us, downloading music is one of our favorite activities when on the Internet. Most of us love surfing web sites that facilitate music downloads. Downloading music from the Internet may make it conveniently available. But does it have a negative effect on the music industry? Does it, in some way affect the earnings of the artists? What are the pros and cons of downloading music? Let us see.

The Pros
Downloading music makes it readily available to the masses. Music reaches the masses in minutes. When it can be downloaded, music lovers get what they need without struggling for long periods of time. When music becomes available within sometime after its release, it is a real musical treat for those waiting for the release. Their favorite music becomes handy.
When you download music, you save on the costs that would be incurred if you would have decided to buy it. Music cassettes, CDs and DVDs cost handsomely. The original copies of music need you to shell out big bucks. If music is downloadable, you are sure to save money, thanks to the facilities of free downloading.
Supporters of downloading music claim that making music readily available contributes to the increased popularity of the artists. The concept of making music available for free downloads has in fact contributed to the fame of the music industry. Being available for download, music reaches the crowd in a relatively lesser amount of time thus boosting its popularity.
The Cons
Though downloading music makes it easily available to the masses, it also makes it spread far and wide overly. Something that is very easily available is also of a lesser value. Something that is scarce is precious while something that is plentiful tends to be of a lesser value.
The practice of downloading music leads to the diminishing of sales of music cassettes, CDs and DVDs. It reduces the sale figures of music companies. It has an adverse effect on the music industry.
Some of the web sites offering the facility of downloading music take registration fees or mandate subscriptions or memberships. It is not always that downloading music is free. You might end up spending an amount close to what you would have spent on the original copies. The resources expended on the download may actually nullify those you would have spent on the original version.
Downloading music gives rise to copyright and piracy issues. By downloading music you lose its originality. When you use the copied versions of music; you indirectly encourage piracy. As you download music, you do not go for the purchase of the original copies of music, which may result in an indirect violation of copyright.
While the facility of downloading music increases the demand for music, it brings down the legitimate sales of the original music. While the artists reach millions in a go, their works of art become an inexpensive commodity. So the next time you find your favorite music just a click away, do not take the simplest road of clicking on it. Think for a while whether your click is going to affect someone’s living.