Scientists explain how classical music changes the world
"You've finally reached a level of twaddle that prompts me to stop reading your blog" commented a reader on my recent post What quantum entanglement can teach classical music. In fairness, my oft repeated hypothesis that classical music is part of a complex interlinked molecular event has generally been treated with a more open-minded response. However, it is not unfair to say that the overall response to these posts has been politely receptive, rather than vociferously supportive. So it is rewarding to find robust academic confirmation of my controversial hypothesis in a report published on the specialist nanotechnology website NanoWerk days after my quantum entanglement post was uploaded. The article reports that researchers at Kobe University in Japan have found that supramolecular nanofibers dynamically align in harmony with the sound of classical music. My header graphic is taken from the report and the following are key extracts:
Sound is vibration of matter, having a frequency, in which certain physical interactions occur between the acoustically vibrating media and solute molecules or molecular assemblies. Music is an art form consisting of the sound and silence expressed through time, and characterized by rhythm, harmony, and melody. The question of whether music can cause any kind of molecular or macromolecular event is controversial, and the physical interaction between the molecules and the sound of music has never been reported.The fact that, to quote a certain cultural commentator, you read it here first is totally irrelevant. But the findings per se are massively relevant, because they prove empirically that classical music is non-localised. This means that listeners to both live and recorded music are just one part of a highly complex molecular interaction, and changing any part of that interaction can change the whole listening experience. The findings of the Japanese researchers are just work in progress, and it is beyond the possible scope of a single post to elaborate on all the potential implications. But, as well as having much relevance to esoteric areas such as music therapy, their findings have much broader implications which start to explain the limitations of molecular-abbreviated binary music files and of molecular-attenuated live concerts.
Scientists working at Kobe University and Kobe City College of Technology, Japan, have now developed a supramolecular nanofiber, composed of an anthracene derivative, which can dynamically align by sensing acoustic streaming flows generated by the sound of music. Time course linear dichroism (LD) spectroscopy could visualize spectroscopically the dynamic acoustic alignments of the nanofiber in the solution. The nanofiber aligns upon exposure to the audible sound wave, with frequencies up to 1000 Hz, with quick responses to the sound and silence, and amplitude and frequency changes of the sound wave. The sheared flows generated around glass-surface boundary layer and the crossing area of the downward and upward flows allow shear-induced alignments of the nanofiber.
Music is composed of the multi complex sounds and silence, which characteristically change in the course of its playtime. The team, led by A. Tsuda, uses "Symphony No. 5 in C minor, First movement: Allegro con brio" written by Beethoven, and "Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550, First movement", written by Mozart in the experiments. When the classical music was playing, the sample solution gave the characteristic LD profile of the music, where the nanofiber dynamically aligned in harmony with the sound of music.
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