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No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
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Virtus Offline
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No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
http://gizmodo.com/a-pill-that-lets-adul...1495105058

A Pill That Lets Adults Learn Perfect Pitch as Easily as Kids

[Image: ku-xlarge.jpg]

Perfect pitch is the ability to accurately name any musical note you hear. It's a talent possessed by just one in 10,000 people, and it can only be learned during a critical period before age 7. Now, scientists have discovered that a common psychiatric medication can restart that learning ability in adults, even if they've never had musical training.

Previous research has found that the epilepsy drug valproate allowed adult mice to learn habits that are usually impossible to develop after youth. So Harvard professor Takao Hensch and his team gave the drug to a group of grown men with no musical training, then asked them to do a series of online ear-training exercises for two weeks. Those who took the drug showed pitch improvement that was significantly better than those taking a placebo, evidence that the drug restored the brain plasticity normally lost after childhood.

The implications for learning are huge. In an interview with NPR, Dr. Hensch points out the potential applications beyond music:

There are a number of examples of critical-period type development, language being one of the most obvious ones. So the idea here was, could we come up with a way that would reopen plasticity, [and] paired with the appropriate training, allow adult brains to become young again.
Though in the same interview, he cautions that experiments in this direction should be undertaken very carefully:

If we've shaped our identities through development, through a critical period, and have matched our brain to the environment in which we were raised, acquiring language, culture, identity, then if we were to erase that by reopening the critical period, we run quite a risk as well.

Maybe someday, with the help of a pill, we'll all have Ella Fitzgerald's perfect pitch.

[Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience via NPR]

http://www.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.33...2/abstract

"Virtus"
01-06-2014 03:37 AM
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Suits Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
Somehow, I just have the feeling that there must be a downside to all this.
01-06-2014 04:27 AM
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Mage Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
I have never practiced music. How can I tell if have the pitch or not?
01-06-2014 04:33 AM
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commiejoe Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
(01-06-2014 04:27 AM)Suits Wrote:  Somehow, I just have the feeling that there must be a downside to all this.

What's the side effects of valproate?
Are people taking it for epilepsy being included in the ear training?
01-06-2014 04:46 AM
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Virtus Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten

"Virtus"
01-06-2014 08:10 AM
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Emancipator Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
Sounds good, too bad you'll destroy your liver with the new daily valproate acid regiment.

Mother Nature is a bitch & Father Time has an undefeated record
"If you watch cinderella backwards, its about a woman who learns her place." --Kbell

demographics is destiny
01-06-2014 04:07 PM
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soup Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
You can't learn perfect pitch. You either born with it or not. They are probably talking about cultivating your potential if you are in fact capable of doing it.

That said, this could be great for learning in general. Hope it works out.

More importantly, something like this might have an impact on Alzheimer's.
(This post was last modified: 01-06-2014 04:41 PM by soup.)
01-06-2014 04:39 PM
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
(01-06-2014 04:07 PM)Emancipator Wrote:  Sounds good, too bad you'll destroy your liver with the new daily valproate acid regiment.

Take the pills, become a rock god, make a few million bucks, pay for a new liver when it fails.

I've seen worse plans.
01-06-2014 07:17 PM
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Emancipator Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
(01-06-2014 07:17 PM)Sawyertxt.3 Wrote:  
(01-06-2014 04:07 PM)Emancipator Wrote:  Sounds good, too bad you'll destroy your liver with the new daily valproate acid regiment.

Take the pills, become a rock god, make a few million bucks, pay for a new liver when it fails.

I've seen worse plans.
Brilliant
Brb faking seizures for rx

Mother Nature is a bitch & Father Time has an undefeated record
"If you watch cinderella backwards, its about a woman who learns her place." --Kbell

demographics is destiny
01-06-2014 08:02 PM
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Parlay44 Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
I don't know. I can tune a guitar by ear. I know what the open strings sound like and I'll bet I can get it pretty damn close to a tuner. It just feels wrong if a string is out of tune.

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01-06-2014 08:36 PM
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StudebacherHoch Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
(01-06-2014 08:36 PM)Parlay44 Wrote:  I don't know. I can tune a guitar by ear. I know what the open strings sound like and I'll bet I can get it pretty damn close to a tuner. It just feels wrong if a string is out of tune.

That's commendable, Parlay - it shows that you've been training your ears, albeit subconsciously. However, you're talking about the ability to hear the intervallic relationship between the strings AKA relative pitch. You are working from a reference tone (in your case your low E) to tune the other strings to it. This is relative pitch, and this left-brain ability can be learned with ear-training and playing your instrument...provided that you are not tone deaf.

Perfect pitch is different. I think we ALL have a bit of perfect pitch, just as well all seem to have a bit of ESP. Ever put on a CD that you love and sing that first note EXACTLY in key prior to the song starting? We didn't learn to do that; it's innate (in those who can do it). Can it be learned? I don't know, but if you have it you can certainly exercise it like a mofo'! I have both perfect and relative pitch - playing music for 50+ years has certainly helped as well as majoring in music (which included semesters of ear-training). Give me any note and an interval and I can sing that intervallic relationship. Ask me to sing a C nowhere near a musical instrument, and I bet I can come within a quarter-tone of it, and I can easy immediately tell you what key any song is in immediately. I'm not sure how much of that came from ear-training, playing live, etc. - or how much was a natural gift...but I will say this: solid ear-training can ONLY improve your musical game! Smile
01-06-2014 09:34 PM
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Parlay44 Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
No I mean I can put on a new set of strings, hit the low E and tune it to what it is supposed to be without listening to a reference tone at the same time. I can hear the note in my head. That's my reference. It's like listening to a phone's dial tone. Everyone knows what that sounds like. Just imagine that note in your head and tune the string to that until it sounds right to you. I can do that with all the open strings.

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(This post was last modified: 01-06-2014 09:49 PM by Parlay44.)
01-06-2014 09:48 PM
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Sombro Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
(01-06-2014 09:48 PM)Parlay44 Wrote:  No I mean I can put on a new set of strings, hit the low E and tune it to what it is supposed to be without listening to a reference tone at the same time. I can hear the note in my head. That's my reference. It's like listening to a phone's dial tone. Everyone knows what that sounds like. Just imagine that note in your head and tune the string to that until it sounds right to you. I can do that with all the open strings.

Exactly. I just think of a particular song in my head (usually with a middle C on piano) and whistle down to an A to tune a guitar/bass. It's similar to "photographic memory" -- you call it up from memory.

Or I just whistle "Whole Lotta Love" -- heard it enough times.
(The riff is A-C-D, isn't it? Been awhile.)

BTW, I've always hated electronic tuners. It's always seems quicker and more accurate to tune by ear to your bandmates or to yourself.
(This post was last modified: 01-06-2014 10:47 PM by Sombro.)
01-06-2014 10:45 PM
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StudebacherHoch Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
Parlay ~ then you are blessed with perfect pitch! Smile
01-06-2014 11:01 PM
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Parlay44 Offline
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RE: No more regrets over quitting piano lessons when you were ten
(01-06-2014 11:01 PM)StudebacherHoch Wrote:  Parlay ~ then you are blessed with perfect pitch! Smile

I doubt it. I equate it with remembering song lyrics or being able to visualize a trip you've done a million times. You walk through it visually in your mind, like playing a video. I say it's a skill you can learn. Some people may have perfect pitch but they're probably idiot savants.

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01-06-2014 11:26 PM
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