Who is the Most Important Band Member?
Are you wondering who the most important member of a band really is?
A study by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveals that the bassist is the most important member of a band.
In the study, it was found that the human brain finds it easier to understand and find the rhythm in a song when it is played at a lower tone, such as a bass.
“Results from a biologically plausible model of the auditory periphery suggest that non-linear cochlear dynamics contribute to the observed effect."
It also shows that people are
more likely to tap their feet, dance, and respond rhythmically to those songs that contain prominent bass music, rather than to higher-pitched instruments such as the drums or guitar.
It is said that the most vital rhythmic information comes from the lowest voice, i.e. the bass.
A skilled bassist will support the band by providing a steady pulse and a good-feeling to each song. The majority of music that is well received by the audience will have a steady rhythm or beat. It is the bassist's responsibility and priority to make sure this happens.
In the study, it was found that listeners could detect more easily when a low-pitched tone was out of rhythm, "indicating better timing encoding for lower-pitched compared with higher-pitch tones."
The bass plays a very powerful role when it comes to how people hear harmonies. When several notes are being played at the same time, we hear them relative to the lowest sound pitch, the bass note.
In the study, the participants were played high and low pitched tones at the same time, with the tones, sometimes shifting in time, either the high-pitched tone was
“The low-voice superiority effect for encoding timing explains the widespread musical practice of carrying rhythm in bass-ranged instruments."
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