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The PJ Tatler

Bryan Preston


May 23, 2014 - 1:32 pm

It’s Friday afternoon going into a holiday weekend. If you’re sane, you don’t care all that much about politics at the moment. Well, you care. You just care about other things too.

So here’s Morgan Freeman nipping helium and talking astronomy. Because, why not?

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As a drummer since the age of around 11 I guess, I’ve put up with a lot of crap from you people. We’re knuckle-draggers. We’re slow. We’re the guys who couldn’t sing and couldn’t play a chord so we picked up two sticks and started hitting stuff.

Well, it turns out, you’ve all been misjudging us. The science is settled: Drummers are smarter than you. You pretty much owe us drummers everything.

The research suggests that drummers have innate problem-solving skills and a positive impact on communities. Researchers at Stockholm’s Karolinska Institutet found that, after playing a series of beats, drummers who had better rhythm scored better on a 60-question intelligence test. Seems using all the various parts of a drum kit to keep one steady beat is actually an expression of intrinsic problem-solving abilities.

Furthermore, other studies show that rhythmic music can actually make other people smarter. A University of Washington psychology professor found that his students got higher scores after undergoing rhythmic light and sound therapy. A University of Texas Medical Branch researcher using the same method on elementary and middle school boys with ADD noted an effect comparable to Ritalin. In fact, the boys’ IQ scores actually went up and stayed up.

It gets even crazier, and more primordial, with reports suggesting drumming played a role in our own civilization. Researchers at theUniversity of Oxford discovered that drummers produce a natural “high” when playing together, heightening both their happiness and their pain thresholds. The researchers extrapolated that this rhythmic euphoria may have been pivotal in mankind establishing communities and society. Essentially, drum circles were the very foundation that made human society possible.

You’re welcome. Enjoy last night’s drum off between Will Farrell and Chad Smith.

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Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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All Comments   (4)
All Comments   (4)
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I was taught that "Beer" was the foundation of society. Maybe drumming attracted the hunter gatherers to the brewery.
21 weeks ago
21 weeks ago Link To Comment
I remember a joke from the 70's. "Do you know the difference between a dead drummer and a dead snake lying in the middle of the road?"

"There was a chance that the snake was on it's way to a gig"
22 weeks ago
22 weeks ago Link To Comment
I thought it was "there are skid marks in front of the snake".
22 weeks ago
22 weeks ago Link To Comment
No, that was a lawyer not a drummer.

Neil Peart is an example of an 'intellectual' drummer; there aren't many others. I'm sure folks have examples in jazz like Art Blakey? It could make non-musicians smarter to dance to the mambo rather than disco due to more complicated rhythms. Maybe boys just need something more exciting than singing bland elementary school songs.

Even as a dumb trombone player I like to play odd rhythms, I really like to play prime number rhythms, 5/4, 7/8, 11/8, or one meter over another; 3/4 over 4/4. Hopefully, I’m making some troubled little boy smarter. Maybe I need to add lights? Light and sound therapy!

How many drummers does it take to change a light bulb?
Five: One to screw the bulb in, and four to talk about how much better Neil Peart coulda done it.
22 weeks ago
22 weeks ago Link To Comment
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