Earworms

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Re: Earworms

Postby brainpanhandler » Sun Oct 24, 2010 11:31 pm

So Kellaris....

Here's the entire article on Kellaris and his research from the UC Magazine:

Songs That Cause The Brain To 'Itch': UC Professor
Investigating Why Certain Tunes Get Stuck In Our Heads

Date: April 4, 2001
By: Carey Hoffman
Phone: (513) 556-1825
Archive: Research News
Warning! The song titles below this line may be hazardous to your sanity:




•"It's A Small World After All"

•"We Will Rock You"

•"The Macarena"

•"Whomp - There It Is"

•"The Theme from Gilligan's Island"


What do these disparate works have in common? They were cited by respondents in a study of tunes that get "stuck in your head." Determining why such songs have that ability is the goal of James J. Kellaris, an associate professor of marketing in the University of Cincinnati College of Business Administration.


Having songs "stuck in your head" happens to nearly all of us. Ninety-nine percent of study respondents said they have experienced the phenomenon. Almost 50 percent say that it occurs frequently.

Kellaris, an expert on the influences of music on consumers, reported preliminary results on his work last month at the Society for Consumer Psychology's winter conference. He has a sample of 1,000 respondents to work with in analyzing his theory that certain songs create a sort of "cognitive itch" - the mental equivalent of an itchy back.

"It is like the familiar pattern of itching and scratching," Kellaris says. "The only way to 'scratch' a cognitive itch is to rehearse the responsible tune mentally. The process may start involuntarily, as the brain detects an incongruity or something 'exceptional' in the musical stimulus. The ensuing mental repetition may exacerbate the 'itch,' such that the mental rehearsal becomes largely involuntary, and the individual feels trapped in a cycle or feedback loop."

Kellaris' research seeks to identify characteristics of music that make them memorable. His preliminary work points in three directions he believes play a role:

•Repetition: One theme song that respondents reported as getting stuck in their heads often was "Mission: Impossible." Kellaris was not surprised. "A repeated phrase, motif or sequence might be suggestive of the very act of repetition itself, such that the brain echoes the pattern automatically as the musical information is processed," he says.

•Musical simplicity: Simpler songs appear more likely to make your brain itch. Anyone who has ever had the misfortune of getting Barney's "I Love You, You Love Me" song stuck can attest to that. Generally, children's songs are more prone to getting stuck than classical music, Kellaris says.

•Incongruity: When a song does something unexpected, it can also spark a cognitive itch. Examples include the irregular time signatures of Dave Brubeck's "Take Five" or the song "America" from West Side Story. Unpredictable melodic patterns or an unexpectedly articulated individual note can have the same impact.


Kellaris is now taking an in-depth look at the survey data he has collected. Of the 1,000 respondents, the kind of music respondents said they got stuck on most recently were songs with lyrics for 73.7 percent, jingles or ads for 18.6 percent and an instrumental tune for 7.7 percent.

But, there's hope. Respondents also reported on the strategies they use to try and rid themselves of stuck tunes. Individual responses ranged from direct approaches like "trying to get busy doing something else" or "reading out loud" to acts of humorous desperation, such as "trying to give the 'tune kooties' to someone else, like (playing) tag, you're it!"

"This research is expected to provide creative guidelines to advertisers that wish to increase the memorability of their ads," says Kellaris. "It should also yield insights concerning the operation of human memory."

http://www.uc.edu/news/kellaris.htm

Kellaris is a marketing professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Business Administration so not surprisingly the bastard is really just looking for the best way to hijack our auditory cortices and enlsave them to inane little ditties advertising the cures for everything that ails us.
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Re: Earworms

Postby justdrew » Mon Oct 25, 2010 12:02 am

a recent example



(you can find flash versions of this that just play forever :hrumph
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Re: Earworms

Postby Alaya » Mon Oct 25, 2010 12:37 am




(holds hands over ears)
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Re: Earworms

Postby norton ash » Mon Oct 25, 2010 2:07 am

WOW, Alaya, I was just telling a friend the other day how once the guitar break-bridge in a pop song got stuck in my head for WEEKS and was driving me mad because I couldn't figure out where the hell it was from... and it was the one toward the end of 'Knowing Me, Knowing You.'

It was the most vexing time I've ever had with trying to figure out where a piece of music was from, and why I kept hearing it in my head.

We listened to AM top 40 radio in the work vehicles when I was on a survey crew in the early 80's, and 'Elvira' by the Oak Ridge Boys, and 'Playin With The Queen of Hearts' by Juice Newton drove me nuts. Songs I didn't like, and could...not...shake.

I always hear 'Purple Rain' during slow driving in blizzards, whiteouts... that's because I heard it for the very first time in that exact situation in Manitoba. But it's a good thing...I love when I hear it in my head, it's reassuring, it comes over me like a prayer or a benign light... the closing riffs sound like drifting forward through a vastness you just have to go with, but carefully.

While My Guitar Gently Weeps is a hard-to-shake earworm.

(Listen to Prince's 'holy fuck' solo in this Hall of Fame version.)
(Gee, I had fun getting here.) (Of course 'Eldorado' Jeff Lynne is in the band so we'll go full circle.)

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Re: Earworms

Postby Allegro » Mon Oct 25, 2010 2:17 am

brainpanhandler wrote:So Kellaris.... http://www.uc.edu/news/kellaris.htm

Kellaris is a marketing professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Business Administration so not surprisingly the bastard is really just looking for the best way to hijack our auditory cortices and enlsave them to inane little ditties advertising the cures for everything that ails us.
brainpanhandler, thanks for mentioning that.

As I live and breathe, I’ve never known the word earworm. It sounded ghastly, :wink at first. Thanks for talking about it.

Since getting back to the desk, I've been wanting to write something in this thread without sounding like a barking dog about it all. :basicsmile You know, Kellaris just doesn't seem to have vocabulary nor background that indicate genuine interest for neuropsychological presumptions wrt earworms. Without doubt, there are lots of ideas out there, and your references got me searching around.

Interestingly enough, I think earworms or something like them are faintly present for me most of the time. They’re heard but not paid much attention when it’s quiet. I’ve not given much thought to earworms until this thread, actually.

For instance, here’s an extreme example of my experiences. Pretty infrequently, I’ve experienced earworms after reading an RI post telling a troubling conspiracy and after listening to some pop tune or classical piece during my sit here at the desk. I’ve then gone to bed with an earworm, feeling burdened with helplessness about the conspiracy. Who knows what else might’ve happened during the day that would’ve increased anxiety levels. It’s been difficult to turn off all of that enough to rest and fall asleep; maybe I just went to sleep out of fatigue. Hard to say until I pay closer attention.

Anyway, fwiw, while reading the referenced Steven Brown’s 2006 pdf titled The Perpetual Music Track: The Phenomenon of Constant Musical Imagery, I turned to the references and found them more substantive. And that evaluation isn’t important. But then I found IMO a satisfying co-written pdf by Steven Brown and Ellen Dissanayake, which I’ve not read entirely, titled The Arts are More than Aesthetics: Neuroaesthetics as Narrow Aesthetics. The paper has nothing to do with earworms, btw, and was probably published 2007, and distinguishes neuroaesthetics with neuroartsology. The authors suggest the latter studies might in time become more important than the former.

Good thread, everybody!
Art will be the last bastion when all else fades away.
~ Timothy White (b 1952), American rock music journalist
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Re: Earworms

Postby streeb » Mon Oct 25, 2010 7:35 pm


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Re: Earworms

Postby Alaya » Tue Oct 26, 2010 1:03 am

norton ash wrote:WOW, Alaya, I was just telling a friend the other day how once the guitar break-bridge in a pop song got stuck in my head for WEEKS and was driving me mad because I couldn't figure out where the hell it was from... and it was the one toward the end of 'Knowing Me, Knowing You.'

It was the most vexing time I've ever had with trying to figure out where a piece of music was from, and why I kept hearing it in my head.

We listened to AM top 40 radio in the work vehicles when I was on a survey crew in the early 80's, and 'Elvira' by the Oak Ridge Boys, and 'Playin With The Queen of Hearts' by Juice Newton drove me nuts. Songs I didn't like, and could...not...shake.

I always hear 'Purple Rain' during slow driving in blizzards, whiteouts... that's because I heard it for the very first time in that exact situation in Manitoba. But it's a good thing...I love when I hear it in my head, it's reassuring, it comes over me like a prayer or a benign light... the closing riffs sound like drifting forward through a vastness you just have to go with, but carefully.

While My Guitar Gently Weeps is a hard-to-shake earworm.

(Listen to Prince's 'holy fuck' solo in this Hall of Fame version.)
(Gee, I had fun getting here.) (Of course 'Eldorado' Jeff Lynne is in the band so we'll go full circle.)



I always found Abba the most insidious. Better to review the rushes of your life with Bach Cello Concertos.

Amazing though, how state induced listening can return you to a moment in the past. :shock:
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Re: Earworms

Postby brainpanhandler » Tue Oct 26, 2010 11:59 am

na wrote:WOW, Alaya, I was just telling a friend the other day...


This:

streeb wrote:


for me was also shockingly and oddly enough synchronistic/topical to my life.



And "holy fuck solo" is right. Man. I was never a Prince fan, but I've had friends whose musical opinions and tastes I respect that describe him as a genius. That was astonishing. I think Petty seemed a bit taken aback that Prince overshadowed the rest of the band, but when you're that fucking on what else can you do?

I intend on getting to this when I have more time.
Allegro wrote:...But then I found IMO a satisfying co-written pdf by Steven Brown and Ellen Dissanayake, which I’ve not read entirely, titled The Arts are More than Aesthetics: Neuroaesthetics as Narrow Aesthetics. The paper has nothing to do with earworms, btw, and was probably published 2007, and distinguishes neuroaesthetics with neuroartsology. The authors suggest the latter studies might in time become more important than the former.


Sounds intruiging.
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Re: Earworms

Postby brainpanhandler » Wed Oct 27, 2010 11:44 am

I wrote:I intend on getting to this when I have more time.
Allegro wrote:...But then I found IMO a satisfying co-written pdf by Steven Brown and Ellen Dissanayake, which I’ve not read entirely, titled The Arts are More than Aesthetics: Neuroaesthetics as Narrow Aesthetics. The paper has nothing to do with earworms, btw, and was probably published 2007, and distinguishes neuroaesthetics with neuroartsology. The authors suggest the latter studies might in time become more important than the former.


Sounds intruiging.


I read through the excerpt. I'm not sure I entirely understand their point except that they want to counter the western enlightenment notion of art as being this rarified objectification of aesthetic sensibilities based on limited criteria that seemingly have no pragmatic/social purposes and that don't function to do anything other than observe and be observed, just to pick sight for an example. A couple of thoughts occur to me. Like the authors, my thoughts of what art "is" when I've considered the question at all, which in fact I've done in the thread in the lounge considering just that question [what is art. see below], tend toward examing the earliest examples of it I can find. It seems to me that if one can figure out what art was for homo sapiens in a period like the late stone age then I'll be closer to an answer that is more foundational and less weighed down by the trappings and complexities of modernity, which is what this post was about in that thread. I wanted to discuss those finger flutings in that thread but no one took me up on it. They are still a mystery and we do love mysteries here at RI.



viewtopic.php?f=34&t=25817&start=30

My next post in that thread was meant to genrate thoughts about the very act of creating. In this case, finger painting. I can remember finger painting as a child. I think everyone has finger painted at some point in their life and I agree with the author of that piece that there is something very primal about the act that brings the artist and the neurotic in us all to the surface. When Sanders writes that there seems to be an innate desire in us all "to smear" it's hard to argue otherwise. There's something in the tactile sensations of smearing that is very pleasing. Maybe the edorphine rush one gets from this pleasure is what brings the guard down and allows expression of repressed memories/thoughts?


The other thought that occurs to me in reading the excerpt on neuroartsology is that fascist governments seem figure out pretty quickly that the arts, insofar as they function in the social ways that Brown/Dissanayake contend, are a threat and need to be suppressed/controlled and rechannelled into pursuits/themes/purposes in concordance with the state's interests. In other words, murdering and incarcerating the subversive artists is usually pretty high on the fascist to do list. So when they write:

Finally, to the extent that the arts are perceived as rewarding, this is not so
only because artworks are appealing objects. There is a wide variety of rewarding
emotions that occur when people create and experience art apart from simply
object-based emotions, including the pleasure of social communion and the moral
zeal of common cause.


You can be sure the fascists get/got this.


I say let's have a finger painting party. I'd vote for them.
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Re: Earworms

Postby Allegro » Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:26 am

Hey, BP, I will get back with you with some ideas to add to your thoughts. My computer has had an annoying glitch (I'm supposing one of the most recent FireFox updates playing havoc with both hard and auxilliary drives) for almost two days, and I'll have to continue working around the havoc until I get the box into the shop early next week. By that time, I will have read the entire chapter or excerpt you've referred to (re neuroartsology), and maybe I'll have something to add too wrt finger painting.

      Best to you :basicsmile and all.
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Re: back to the arts as such

Postby Allegro » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:17 am

Allegro wrote:Hey, BP, I will get back with you with some ideas to add to your thoughts. ... By that time, I will have read the entire chapter or excerpt you've referred to (re neuroartsology), and maybe I'll have something to add too wrt finger painting.
I have purposefully stacked comments in different spaces below. If I hadn't, I would've lost my way and you, entirely! :bigsmile
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Re: 1 finger painting party

Postby Allegro » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:17 am

brainpanhandler wrote:... I say let's have a finger painting party. I'd vote for them. [Refer.]
Me too.

Excuse me. What kind of music would you prefer at the party? :hihi: BP, finger painting I vaguely recall doing in elementary school. Consider me doing finger paints while wanting really to go back to practicing Paderewski and Mozart at home. Which I had been known to do. Oh, and not that the classics should be the only music played at the party, for heaven’s sakes. Just maybe a little though, here and there?
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Re: 2 finger painting article

Postby Allegro » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:17 am

brainpanhandler wrote:...It seems to me that if one can figure out what art was for homo sapiens in a period like the late stone age then I'll be closer to an answer that is more foundational and less weighed down by the trappings and complexities of modernity, which is what this post was about in that thread. I wanted to discuss those finger flutings in that thread but no one took me up on it. They are still a mystery and we do love mysteries here at RI. [Refer.]
Here’s a thought about art in antiquity that might suit you. Remember those discussions Bill Moyers had with various philosophers, like 20 years or so ago? One was a talk with Joseph Campbell, and in one of those videos Campbell described what we might call a philosopher or shaman. Now, please note, I'm writing what I remember from the video I watched some years ago.

Drawings of shamans in antiquity can be seen on cave walls, and Moyers’s production staff provided a photograph, although I don’t recall the era. The photo showed a person who seemed to sit in what we would call the lotus position without any particular kind of garment or headdress, I think. Campbell noted, wrt those ancient shamans of a certain whatever tribe, words that represented the shaman’s purpose: “Look through me, and I will mock your god (or God).”

I don’t remember an exact context and meaning of which Campbell spoke, so I’m piecing together this one: if a person obsesses on some one thing, then that obsession should be re-examined by presenting it to the shaman who will help the one obsessing see it differently. Perhaps, someone in RI would remember the moment in the video better (or even find the video), but I think that made up definition would pass, for the moment, anyway.

Here’s why I’ve remembered that Campbell conversation. At the time, I had already begun collecting clowns, you know the ones that look pretty sitting on shelves and any remembrances brought to mind would have been cordial, and Campbell referred to antiquity’s shaman or philosopher as our present-day clown: who would laugh at whatever was thought to be (vainly) serious and ultimately important.

_____________

b 1881, Spanish painter, sculptor, Pablo Ruiz Picasso wrote:All children are born artists.
The problem is to remain artists as we grow up.
While reading the February, 1947, article you posted, Paint with Your Fingers, I felt as you wrote “…weighed down by the trappings and complexities of modernity,....” Y’know, I was expecting a feel-good article, yet as it turned, I remembered Adam Curtis’s documentary, The Trap, that revealed convoluted pretenses the psychiatric community accomplished here in the states and UK during the latter twentieth century. Then, there is the matter, noted in the last paragraph of that article, of the army and navy getting their fingers in on finger painting for purposes likely to have been intelligence gathering. Jeez, what must’ve the US military not been involved in?

FWIW, a note of interest perhaps only to me. I looked up Karl Menninger, a psychiatrist named in the last paragraph of that article, and the Menninger Foundation, and saw the name Bill Hayward, son to Leland Hayward, a Hollywood and Broadway agent and theatrical producer in the 1940’s. Leland dated Greta Garbo and Katharine Hepburn, apparently.

Also, FWIW, I’m still waiting for more hard-science research on the heart-brain connections. Waiting, still.
Last edited by Allegro on Thu Nov 04, 2010 9:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: 3 neuroartsology define

Postby Allegro » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:18 am

brainpanhandler wrote:I read through the excerpt. I'm not sure I entirely understand their point except that they want to counter the western enlightenment notion of art as being this rarified objectification of aesthetic sensibilities based on limited criteria that seemingly have no pragmatic/social purposes and that don't function to do anything other than observe and be observed, just to pick sight for an example. [Refer.]
About the neuroartsology thing. What I think the inventors of the neologism, neuroartsology, want is to scrupulously augment conventional Eurocentric objectifications, phenomena and perceptual preferences of art and music with definitions of art and music as what people do, as actions or behaviors of doing alone or in a group. Or, as the authors wrote: “...a neuroartsology that seeks to explain the full array of cognitive, neural, and cultural phenomena involved in the universal behaviors of artification.” (For those who’ve not read the paper, artification is a neologism for art as an activity; something people do (to “artify”)).

From my own world of curiosities:
    Are the arts everywhere?
    Where are the arts not?

It isn’t hard for me to go even further philosophizing that art and music, in immeasurable, blended forms, are results of catalyzed forces (however those processes could be articulated by way of hard science) within all flora and fauna and rocks; perhaps of all known creation, meaning our universe. That’s pretty much what I have felt since a little boy doing practices on the piano although I thought those thoughts in religious terms that were part of the scene in which I was reared. Finally, it will be interesting to read further results by authors Steven Brown and Ellen Dissanayake, and others, too.

brainpanhandler wrote:The other thought that occurs to me in reading the excerpt on neuroartsology is that fascist governments seem figure out pretty quickly that the arts, insofar as they function in the social ways that Brown/Dissanayake contend, are a threat and need to be suppressed/controlled and rechannelled into pursuits/themes/purposes in concordance with the state's interests. In other words, murdering and incarcerating the subversive artists is usually pretty high on the fascist to do list. So when they write:
Finally, to the extent that the arts are perceived as rewarding, this is not so
only because artworks are appealing objects. There is a wide variety of rewarding
emotions that occur when people create and experience art apart from simply
object-based emotions, including the pleasure of social communion and the moral
zeal of common cause.
You can be sure the fascists get/got this. ... [Refer.]
You bet they get it! The Russian composer born 1906, Dmitri Shostakovich, comes to mind. In addition, I would refer the first four pages of introduction in pdf The Mass Psychology of Fascism as this writer’s preferred definition of fascism.
Art will be the last bastion when all else fades away.
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Re: Earworms

Postby brainpanhandler » Tue Jan 11, 2011 1:21 pm

God, this has been stuck in my head for days.

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