Medical Mysteries of Music

Artist with Synesthesia Paints What She Sees When She Hears Certain Songs

I’m fascinated by people with synesthesia, a condition where the senses overlap. In the case of Melissa McCracken, she experiences sounds as colours. Whenever a song plays, her brain also interprets the music as moving splashes of colourful images which she then captures as paintings. (To learn more about synesthesia, Rupinder provides this link.)

Damn. I’d love to have some of her stuff hanging in my house. This, for example, is how she experiences “Tonight Tonight” by the Smashing Pumpkins.

Here’s David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”

And although I’ll never be a John Mayer fan, I can dig this representation of “Gravity.”

Read more at Oddity Central after you check out this video.


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38431 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

Let us know what you think!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.