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Brain!: The Musical Sensation

Or is it, Music!: The Brain Sensation...?

PBS News Hour published a video about the power of music on the human brain. 'Why Music Has a Profound Effect on the Brain' is a quick 5-minute discussion about why and how music impacts our mood(s). According to the video, our brains seek patterns in order to maximize our chances of survival - if our brains can foresee the future, we can prepare for whatever might come next. Music, then, offers our brains solace with repetitive patterns, like Coldplay's Clocks. Or music can scramble our noggins with crescendos, rhythmic variety, and tonal changes (e.g. Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody).

I reminisced impactful musical moments in my life. From classical to opera, and Shoegaze to post-punk, my sample playlist are songs that shook my core. For instance, when I heard Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata in the video game Resident Evil, my kid ears never heard anything so mournful. And when I watched West Side Story for the first time around 14 years old, my brain thought: you can do that with music!? Enjoy this musical tour of my formative years. Hopefully your brain will ignite, just as mine did, when you listen.

Fun Fact: when I write, there must, must be music playing in the background.


Heard from the video game Resident Evil:


Heard from the film Life is Beautiful:

I don't remember where I first heard this but this is the anthem of my late-90s high school years:

Such a memorable musical:


I heard this while watching a modern dance recital at Arizona State University:

From the film Marie Antionette (watch the sunrise):


This won a Pulitzer!

From the film Gone Girl:

Fantastic re-imagining based on Vivaldi's Four Seasons (listen to the original at the 00:50 mark)!

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