From Scientific American:
An ambitious new paper recently published by Jochim Hansen and Johann Melzner in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology argues precisely that. The researchers brought pedestrians into a laboratory and played them a short, stripped-down piece of music consisting of a series of alternating chords. Some people heard chords including the tritone; others the perfect fifth. A couple other tweaks were also made: in the tritone condition, the chords were played slowly—only once every four-beat measure—while in the perfect fifth condition, the chords went by rapidly, sounding every beat. Further, a “reverberation” effect was added such that the tritone chords sounded like they were being played in a cavernous cave and the perfect fifth chords in a carpeted closet.
What the scientists found is that the simple act listening to either of these two chord sets changed how people processed information in a very basic way.
Read the whole article here. And it’s not just adults, either. Brad forwards this article about how music and rhythm can create bonds between parents and babies.
Swaying to music’s rhythm may have more of a scientific meaning than meets the eye. Researchers at McMaster University in Canada found that people who move together are also building social bonds. For this study in particular, published in the journal Developmental Science, researchers found that moving together in the same time can affect the social behavior of babies who have barely even learned to walk.