I sing and play my ukulele, but I have played and sung for a long time. I’ve tried other instruments too, i.e. keyboard and guitar, but now I’m limited to the uke. These have always been great fun after the initial… ‘–in instrument!’ times that we all go through!
I’ve always felt something about music that lifts me, lightens my day and makes me feel alive. Is this just me, or is there something more about music and how our brains work that is special?
For me, the answer is a resounding, yes! I’ve rarely met anyone who doesn’t have a tune in their head and a song in their heart! From the basic rhythm to the emotional connection, it just has it all!
I’m not that good at singing or playing, but that’s not the point, it is the learning, the playing, the total involvement that’s the magic!
When I came upon this TED presentation on, ‘How playing an instrument benefits your brain, by Anita Collins,’ I was hooked!
There is more about music and our brains than I knew. This short video made me realise that there is a potential tool in my fight against my dementia.
I’ve heard people play an instrument, in the so-called late stages of dementia and just amazed at how!? I heard a daughter talking about her Mum after listening to a piece of music that she hadn’t heard since childhood, she said, ‘It brought her back!’
The emphasis is mainly on learning an instrument, but as we all know, the voice is our own! Learning to sing, is not just a straight forward, open your mouth and out it comes; that’s called talking for most! To sing with pleasure and pleasingly, takes time and effort. There is a myth that we hear all the time, ‘I can’t sing!’ This is not true! We can all sing! There is a voice in us all! Just as instruments can sound so different, so it is valid for the singer. We have this built-in fear, ‘I’ll sound awful, I make such a racket, I’m tone-deaf, no one should be subjected to that, it’s ok for you, you can sing!’ This is a natural feeling for all of us, but once you break that with your first song, that you’ve always wanted to sing; that you still sing when alone, you’ll realise the magic! No one can judge, or deprive you of the happiness that music and singing bring, so don’t let them! Sing!
Steven Fry was once hypnotised to sing a song on a show. He has a fear of singing, which I’m sure he would eloquently argue was rational, while at the same time stating how totally and frustratingly irrational that is!
A hypnotist told Steven Fry he could sing, and he did. I’m no hypnotist, but I’m telling you, You Can Sing!
Learning a new instrument is something that compounds the addictive and beneficial nature of music. Going from that initial uphill climb to that first solo piece is a fantastic journey and totally worth the effort. However, our brains’ effort and impact are more significant than anything else I have come across!
Watch the video, have a think about it and let me know your thoughts, please?
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