What do we know about Music?

“Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife.”

Kahlil Gibran

“Music is the moonlight in the gloomy night of life”

John Paul Friedrich Richter

“Music is the universal language of mankind”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Introduction

These quotes on music give us a little idea about what music is to people and how it makes them feel. Music is defined as vocal or instrumental sounds or both combined in such a way as to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion. Music is an art and so it is usually influenced by culture and it becomes an important part of all cultures. Music does not only have to be professional, even a mother singing a lullaby for her baby is music.

History of Music

The history of music is almost as old as humanity. Archaeologists have found a primitive flute made of bone and ivory which can be dated back to almost 43,000 years old. A lot of musical styles could have been oral and so there is not much evidence on that. The oldest song by man is known to be the “Hurrian Hymn No. 6” which was an ode to the goddess Nikkal composed in cuneiform by ancient Hurrians around 14th century B.C. But the earliest piece of music was found on a 4000-year-old Sumerian clay tablet which had instructions on how to play the hymn in honour of the ruler Lipit-Ishtar. The oldest musical composition to have survived is known to be from the first century A.D., a Greek tune called the “Seikilos Epitaph”. This song was found engraved on an ancient marble.

Types of Music

The world is filled with several music genres and music styles. Some of the common music genres with examples are:

  • Classical – Moonlight by Ludwig Van Beethoven
  • Country – You should be here by Cole Swindell
  • Electronic Dance Music (EDM) – Fade by NCIS
  • Hip Hop – Gangsters Paradise by Coolio
  • Indie Rock – Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now by The Smiths
  • Jazz – A Kiss to Build a Dream on by Louis Armstrong
  • K-pop – Butter by BTS
  • Metal – Diary of Jane by Breaking Benjamin
  • Pop – Shape of You by Ed Sheeran
  • Rap – These Guys by Blay Vision
  • Rhythm & Blues (R&B) – You Got it Bad by usher
  • Rock – Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin
  • Blues – Sultans of Swing by Dire Straits

Benefits of Music

  • Research shows that music helps in keeping your heart healthy. Blood flows more easily when music is played, heart rate gets reduced, blood pressure lowers, it also decreased cortisol levels which is the stress hormone and it increases serotonin and endorphin in blood.
  • Music boosts the brain’s production of dopamine which helps in relieving anxiety and depression.
  • Music triggers some biochemical stress reducers which then help in reducing stress.
  • People going through depression are recommended to listen to music and it is supposed to help.
  • Music therapy is used for people suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia. This music therapy relaxes the patients.
  • Music therapy also helps in managing the pain, it reduces the perceived intensity of pain.
  • Music is supposed to increase the workout endurance one might have.
  • For some people, music helps in concentration and minimizes the chances of getting distracted.
  • Music helps in regulating and understanding your emotions.

Conclusion

Music has existed for a very long time and that too in many forms. Most of us listen to different kinds of music just because we feel like it, without realizing the benefits it has. So, music isn’t just some sound with some instrument, it indeed is the moonlight in the gloomy night of light.

References