Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Apes Take to the Keyboard: The World of BioMusic

At the nexus of communication and music, enters a monkey.. or two. Recently musician Peter Gabriel has teamed up with scientists to explore the musical inclinations of apes:

"Gabriel said in a telephone interview last week that he has no doubt the bonobos have a sense of music and composition...In a video that has not been made public because of copyright issues, Gabriel and his band interacted musically with the bonobos; each ape got a turn to play a keyboard along with music Gabriel was playing from an adjoining room...Patricia Gray is a professional pianist as well as a clinical professor and senior resident scientist of biomusic at the Music Research Institute, a new center at the University of North Carolina- Greensboro. She did a technical analysis of Panbanisha's improvised composition with Gabriel and was startled at how well the bonobo played. Biomusic is the study of how various species use sound to communicate." Read the rest of it here.

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