Ahh, remember the long sweet lingering in the womb, when the subtle echoes of outside voices and the swoosh of amniotic fluid soothed your waiting soul? NO?
Well, even if you don’t, there are adults who believe that what goes on acoustically in proximity to mom’s bulging belly may have dramatic effects upon the evolving brain therein.
This is not in the realm of my expertise, though I’ve always been fascinated by the prospects.
I like this post about introducing the unborn to music, with a range of choices to consider. The ‘Mozart Effect’ is widely known, but I agree with the idea of the mother using intuition with the responses of her fetus. Regular hearing begins at about the 4 month stage. It is believed that the most effective music in terms of future musical development depends on rhythmic factors. Higher frequencies tend to be muted out in the fluid environment.
There’s also underwater sound therapy (for those who’ve already gone through the birth process, that is).
When I attended a seminar in Halliburton, ON about sound ecology, I witnessed a video made by a woman who explored recording her own reactionary (wordless) sounds underwater while scuba diving by a coral reef. To me, it was as close as any of us might ever get to being back in the womb. It was incredibly comforting, creating for me a longing to get back there, away from the cacophony of every day life.
What I can give you from my own experience, though it’s not highly sophisticated, is very simple. While lying in a bathtub, lie back with your head slightly submerged, just enough so that your ears are under water. Hum, sing, overtone sing, yodel, try all those funny noises you made as a kid, etc. Notice the intense listening you experience inside your head. Without the interference of those sound waves traveling through the air (or at least have them greatly reduced in significance), there is an unusual calmness present. It allows us to get inside our own sound. And in the case of overtone singing, it tends to ‘exaggerate’ the harmonic content we might otherwise miss.
When it comes to recording whale song, for example, there are numerous complex factors to take into account. I won’t pretend to know or understand these principles, but if you’re interested, here’s a good site for the layperson.
I did have the pleasure of ‘jamming’ with the songs of the whales from Raratonga, on a recording by Lisa Walker. I could imagine sharing their environment, and perhaps even intutitively acknowledging what they were communicating.
It has been shown that the calls of dolphins, with their staccato like sound when heard above water, actually resemble human overtone singing when recorded underwater with hydrophones. For me, that’s reason enough to sing overtones, if we can interact with these highly intelligent beings!Comment