Thursday, November 15, 2007

Sound and Music

Listening to NPR Science Friday this morning, and there was an interview with Oliver Sacks on his new book, “Musicophilia.”

I’ve heard many interviews with him, and I’ve always, always, always been fascinated.  He has an innate ability to take the most arcane, specialized subject – in this case, music’s effect on the brain – and discuss it in relatable ways.  I immediately put the cd version of his book on hold at the library, and I can’t wait to get it.

Then I was listening to Radio Lab, a program that I absolutely LOVE.  They’ll take some subject – sleep, or the placebo effect, or space – and riff on it in unusual, unexpected ways.  This one was a sort of ‘making of’ episode, recorded at an Apple Store (mmm!  Apple Store!), where they talked about some of the ways they work.  And this line absolutely jumped out of the headphones:

“Sound is like touch…from a distance.”

Interesting that both of these subjects / discussions dance around the concept of “Sound Therapy,” which (half-sentence explanation alert!) is the idea of using sound and music to treat various forms of mental illness.  It’s something Camilla and I have talked about briefly as a path for Whitaker…

Really strange and surprising – suddenly it’s been tapping at the edges of my consciousness.  Sorta like AA did.  Weird.

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