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Chris Merkord

I’m singing in the rainforest – Researchers find striking similarities between bird song and human music

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The origin of human music has long been the subject of intense discussion between philosophers, cultural scientists and naturalists. Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Seewiesen, Germany and Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, US, have now found striking parallels between our music and the song of a small brown bird living in the Amazon region. The Musician Wren favors consonant over dissonant intervals, something that has rarely been observed in other animal species before. This bird’s musicality goes even further: it prefers to sing perfect consonances (octaves, perfect fifths, and perfect fourths) over imperfect consonances leading to some passages which may sound to human listeners as if they are structured around a tonal center.

 

Read the full article: http://www.thealmagest.com/im-singing-rainforest-researchers-find-striking-similarities-bird-song-human-music/6535

 

This article is based on the following original work:

Emily Doolittle & Henrik Brumm: O Canto do Uirapuru: Consonant intervals and patterns in the song of the musician wren. Journal of Interdisciplinary Music Studies. (Open Access, pdf available under http://www.musicstudies.org/)

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