Music to our ears?

It's not that I'm not biased given the subject matter of the study, and its conclusion, but I thought you'd find this piece from the LA Health News magazine worth a read. An excerpt:

Songs that make our hearts soar can make them stronger too, researchers report. They found that when people listened to their favorite music, their blood vessels dilated in much the same way as when laughing, or taking blood medications.

"We have a pretty impressive effect," said Dr. Michael Miller, director of preventive cardiology at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore.

"Blood vessel diameter improved... The vessel opened up pretty significantly. You can see the vessels opening up with other activities such as exercise," Miller said. A similar effect is seen with drugs such as statins and ACE inhibitors.

The inverse was also found to be true, i.e. when the individuals listened to music they disliked, their blood vessels narrowed. I guess this means I really should:

  1. Keep listening to more from A. R. Rahman, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Zakir Hussain, Mozart, Enya, Frou Frou, Sixpence, and Royksopp (this video is beautiful!).
  2. Skip the next Pritam Chakrobarty and Himesh Reshammiya soundtracks ;)

And here is some good music to keep us healthy and in good spirits. A cool rendition of Pehla Nasha from Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar (1992). Hope you're having a great weekend, everyone!


Kanan said...

Hahaha! good one.. I like the inverse. ;)

Long live good music! Specially quality HFM.

Darshit said...

Nice info. You must have heard about music healing of plants. It is similar to this theory. And music definately helps us to get over everything around us. And that's what Resul Pookutty said in his speech [about Om].

This version of Pehla Nasha is lovely. Thanks for putting it up.

Certainly I can not even stand to bad music. And some truck/bus/pvt.vehicles drivers plays horrible repeat songs [most favs of them are Dilwale and stuff like that, yuck] I hate them. To some extent I like peppy Pritam nos. which are not rip offs. [some] And your choices are interesting. I would love to put Karunesh in this list. See this Fabulous video.

Bhargav Saikia said...

Interesting! Like you, I should continue listening to Rahman, SEL, Enya and Anushka Shankar! ;)

I'm going to show this piece to my tutor this week (I'm studying Molecular Biology)! Lets see what he has to say about it. :)

theBollywoodFan said...

Kanan: True! Long live good music indeed. Whenever I see an old movie (1940s through 1970s), I realize Hindi film music has deteriorated over time, but while a lot of our current music cannot be compared to the old school greats, at least a lot is still pretty good in its own right.

Darshit: Glad you enjoyed this. Yes, music therapy has long been studied and all, but it's always cool to come across the info in a health magazine :) I like the approaches Resul Pookutty and A. R. Rahman take to their professions, really. I haven't read a whole lot about Resul, but I know Rahman has said his work is based around spirituality, which I find really interesting.

Have you listened to the Buddha Bar series of music albums? If you like Karunesh, I'm sure you'll like it! I think it's even got that great mix by Karunesh.

Bhargav: I hope it leads to a fun discussion. Do share what your tutor has to say about it!

Darshit said...

By spirituality and Rahman, I got this in my mind. Recently I read in Screen-
Gulzar telling about Rahman---
There's a beautiful tradition that Rahman follows-the moment his singer stands in front of microphone, Rahman lights a candle. So whenever I want to ask him when he is planning to start the recording, I jokingly asked him, "Mombatti kab jalaaoge?" :-D

Oh yes, I heard Buddha Bar. Its really nice. I love lounge music.

Nicki said...

Cute. I love listening to music too. Listen to it all day if possible. Can not cook and clean without music. Also can not blog without it either. :)

theBollywoodFan said...

Darshit: Thanks for sharing that info. Rahman seems to be one who strongly prefers to work through the night for that reason as well.

If you like lounge music, you might also like the Nirvana Lounge series of albums (not sure if we've had this discussion before).

Nicki: Yes! The arteries could use some loving! :o)

Joss said...

Like your list! Those are all great names, that I am familiar with, although my knowledge stops at Frou Frou. Yes, indeed, music can be very healing. I must get my new mp3 player into action so I can listen to Hindi film music ... everywhere! I can't at the moment think of anything more uplifting and enlivening than Rahman at his best, and it doesn't surprise me to hear of the spirituality underpinning his work. I'm sure he has strengthened my heart!

Bhargav Saikia said...

Sure thing! I'll get back to you by this weekend ;)

theBollywoodFan said...

Joss: Frou Frou's album 'Details' is among my favorite music albums of all time. For that alone, I think they deserve mention. I think you'll like the disc. As for A. R. Rahman and his take on spirituality, you might find the article that's quoted at the beginning of this post interesting. Completely agree on the strengthening of the heart, I think it's a blessing, really.

Bhargav: Great! Good luck with everything.