Saturday, January 31, 2015

Piano Music and Its Benefits to Brain Development

Sonatas and symphonies on the piano are not only sound nice, but they are also relaxing to listen to. Discoveries by neuroscientists have indicated that listening to and playing piano music helps with better development of certain parts of the brain. Studies of children exposed to such sounds at a young age show that there are differences in how specific parts of their brains develop over time.

By imaging the brains of people during childhood, adolescence, and adulthood, experts found that in their research, people that practiced the piano early on had differences from those who did not. There were actually variations in nerve tracts that go from the cerebral cortex, the main part of the brain, though the medulla, to the brainstem and spinal cord. The scans showed that the brain matter was more organized in these pathways in kids that practiced the piano.

The coatings of nerves were also better formed, it was found, providing more insulation that enables impulses to travel faster. This makes the nerves especially more efficient at transferring signals from the brain to fingers, an essential trait for playing the piano and especially fast paced parts of classical pieces, for example.

Musical training seems to affect other areas of the brain as well. The corpus callosum is the area in between the two hemispheres of the brain and where a lot of information is transferred between the two halves. A study showed that this section is thicker in musicians than non-musicians and in people that had music training when young. This enhanced connection is thought to maybe speed the communication from one half of the brain to another, so it could improve motor control, better connect areas of emotion and memory, and allow for more efficient control of the fingers while playing.

Other researchers proved that when children of preschool age practiced piano music, there was an increase in spatial reasoning ability. This capacity in turn affects mathematical reasoning. The connections between brain neurons appear to be strengthened by listening to and practicing. All brain signals are transmitted between the edges of neurons, or brain cells that are specialized for ultimately sending signals to the nerves in the body.

Non musicians are not necessarily at a disadvantage when it comes to being able to perform certain actions. People instructed to make certain finger movements in a study were able to do so whether they played the piano or not, but there was more activity detected in the brains of musicians. Overall, the various studies show that piano music seems to increase the efficiency of the brain to transmit nerve signals and improves motor coordination and cognitive reasoning.

In young children, the brain is more able to develop in critical parts, so it is believed that the changes brought on by music training can be permanent, but that has not yet been proven. It is still not known that if someone stops playing altogether, the changes seen in the corpus callosum would be permanent, or if the person would always have to play to keep their brain in shape, like when working out to build muscle.

All the research put together suggests there are benefits to brain development by playing piano music, so it seems musical training is vital to the education of young children. Mathematics and certain sciences can be difficult for some to understand. Music may assist in the ability to comprehend math skills. There is always the satisfaction one has when they possess a musical skill. At the very least, the enjoyment of listening to music and having an outlet of creativity are things that provide an advantage to the quality of life for anyone.

Andy West is a writer on many topics, including piano and musical instruments. Hearing piano music is thought to soothe the mind and assist in brain development.
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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

ABC Music at the NAMM Show in Anaheim

NAMM - "We envision a world in which the joy of making music is a precious element of daily living for everyone; a world in which every child has a deep desire to learn music and a recognized right to be taught; and in which every adult is a passionate champion and defender of that right."

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Gifts for the Brain - Music, Art, Science

ABC Music expands its products for right-hand-side brain development for all ages. Puzzles, toys, electronic kits, and gifts based on the works of Leonardo Da Vinci, MC Escher, and Vincent Van Gogh. You won't find another store with this incredible selection.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

9 Things That SHOULDN'T Be Musical Instruments ... But Are

YouTube Nation delivers a collection of unusual instruments including a baseball bat, garbage, vegetables, and a typewriter.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Why You Shouldn’t Quit Your Music Lessons

Did you take music lessons as a kid? Here’s how the benefits could follow you for the rest of your life!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Evolution of the Saxophone

Evolution of the Saxophone is a video montage, which displays a chronological history of the instrument using star performers from each musical era.

Originally invented as a classical and military band instrument, this innovative addition to the orchestra gradually made its way into virtually every style of music. The video begins in 1844 with its Belgian inventor Adolph Sax and goes through its evolution from European classical to an 80 year history as the iconic instrument in American jazz. From Adolph Sax to John Phillip Sousa to Coleman Hawkins to Charlie Parker to former U.S. President Bill Clinton the saxophone continues to be one of the worlds most popular instruments.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Why Playing the Piano Is Awesome

Are you interested in music and considering learning how to play your first instrument? Or are you a seasoned musician that's looking to expand your musical knowledge even further? Either way, playing the piano is an excellent skill to have. If you don't already know how to play, you should learn! And if you need reasons to do it, here's five of them:

1) Playing the piano isn't hard! Or at least, not physically - compared to other musical instruments, the piano is much easier to pick up. The guitar for example, requires some serious practice just to make a single pleasant sound, let alone an entire song. There are so many tough finger positions that you need to learn to be able to play even the most basic chords. With the piano on the other hand, it's possible to make coherent sounds from the very beginning because each key by itself is already set to make a certain pitch.

2) Knowing how to play piano makes you a versatile musician - The piano is an extremely versatile instrument, and the only one that allows you to play multiple notes, simultaneously, and with ease. This makes it possible to perform songs from all different genres. This also makes the piano an ideal instrument for composing. Just learning to read the music alone will put you far ahead of many others in the music world, and give you a better understanding of music in general.

3) Playing piano makes you strong, mentally and physically - Piano playing is good for you all around. Anyone who has played piano for a while will have very strong fingers, without a doubt. Piano also works out your brain. As you probably know, learning a language is one of the best exercises your brain can get. And learning piano is pretty much like learning a new musical language. Pianists never stop learning. Studies have shown that learning to play music, especially the piano, can improve your IQ. Most of these studies have focused on children, but studies on adults prove that they benefit as well. Children who take piano lessons exhibit more self-discipline and generally do better in school than those who are not into music. For adults, researchers have measured strong changes in the brains of those who begin taking piano lessons, even after the age of 65.

4) Playing piano improves confidence - if you take lessons you will have to play in front of your instructor regularly. And without a doubt, anyone who knows you are learning to play the piano will be asking you to play for them. These instances alone give you more opportunities to perform in front of others than you would have otherwise. When you start to receive compliments on your new skill it will boost your self esteem, making it easier to perform in front of a large audience when the time comes. Just knowing that you have learned an impressive new skill is enough to give anyone's confidence a boost.

5) It's fun! - knowing how to play the piano opens up a bunch of possibilities. You can easily learn your favorite songs, and then you can play then whenever you feel like it! This is an impressive skill to show off when all your friends and family are around, and it's even more fun when everyone sings along. You alone can provide the entertainment at a party which is awesome.
If you have always wanted to learn to play piano, don't wait any longer!

Call B&N Piano today at 610-485-4758 Or visit our shop located at 2460 Dutton Mill Rd in Aston, PA
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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Constructive Power of Music

Music is powerful. For centuries people have written about how it affects us all in both positive and negative ways. For a long time, people have been studying the link between music and its effect on the brain. It has been suggested that certain types of classical music help the brain to focus more and to think creatively. Then there is also the school of thought that insists that listening to certain types of music will allow the brain waves to function in such a way that it will make the person more intelligent. There are many scientific theories that support this finding as well.

Because of the ability that music has to make us feel things in very profound ways, the study of the effect that music has on the brain is definitely one that holds a lot of weight. Due to its versatility, music has slowly become integrated into the field of science, as people are now seeing that there is a definite correlation between the type of music that you listen to and your brain activity when you are listening to that specific type of music.

The effect of music on the brain

In the Cerebrovascular department at Cleveland Clinic, one doctor has started making pioneering moves towards studying the effects that music has on the brain and how it can make the brain relax. Brain relaxation is very important, especially when the patient is having to do something like undergo a major surgery. As much as the anaesthetic can shut off the bodily functions, there is still a lot of brain activity. This sometimes causes undue stress on the body, and creates conditions that are less than ideal in terms of operating. According to the research, however, the music can put the brain into a lulled state of ease and relaxation, making the surgery much easier for both the patients and the doctors to endure. This, of course, elevates the levels of general wellbeing in the body. It is believed that due to this, the body can actually heal faster after a major surgery than it normally would.

While it is true that music cannot cure any form of disease, it can generally promote happiness and wellbeing via the release of certain chemicals such as serotonin and dopamine. These chemicals act to make you happy, and when you are happy, you will experience the rush of endorphins, giving you an overall better sense of feeling good about yourself.

Besides the medical studies, we all know just how music can affect us. You can go from having a really bad day to having an amazing one in matter of minutes if the right type of song is playing on the radio or on one's iPod.

What's better than being able to listen to wonderful music? Well, making it, of course! There is nothing more satisfying than being able to play an instrument and generate a great song. It is not only therapeutic for those who make it, but obviously for those who listen to it, too.

Want to learn to play an instrument? Come to Phoenix Benedict Music Academy! You will be taught by the best in the business and receive a great musical education. For more info, visit
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