Saturday, November 22, 2014.  Here is a fantastic video!  Short and worth the watch!!

Musicians’ Brains Really Do Work Differently — In A Good Way

Did you know that every time musicians pick up their instruments, there are fireworks going off all over their brain?”

“That’s the launching point for a fantastic little video made by educator Anita Collins and animator Sharon Colman Graham for TED-Ed. What they explain is that while listening to music is beneficial, playing music is “the brain’s equivalent of a full-body workout.”

“What’s more: Neuroscientists have found that some of these aspects of mental work are different from any other activity studied, including playing sports or engaging in various creative pursuits.”

For teachers, TED-Ed has made a full, customizable lesson plan available on this fascinating topic and exciting research. Happy playing!”


I especially noticed the description (at around 2:00 on the lower slider bar) of the activities of the left and right brain hemispheres, and of the corpus callosum area that passes information between the two hemispheres.  Changes due to early trauma in brain development note that all of these areas are impacted by infant and child abuse trauma.  Learning to play music HEALS us!

There are also some very important article links HERE about how verbal abuse terribly hurts some of these same brain regions that learning to play an instrument can help heal!

While I would like to see some of the references for the research mentioned in this video I am not motivated enough to contact the organization that did this video to look for the list.  I just BELIEVE what they are saying is absolutely true!!


I was thinking about this earlier in the day before I watched this video as I practiced my piano scales.  I want to HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone interested in achieving some of these kinds of healing benefits right from the get-go!!

Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist in 60 Exercises by Charles-Louis Hanon

Be sure to buy the 2006 edition with the cover in color!!!  It is the best translation from the French available, and that is important for reasons explained in the text.  If you click on this link (above) you will find the book is really cheap new, and very cheap used!  It is a perfect learning tool for newbies and a fantastic exercise book for any musician who wants to train to perfection!

I was also thinking that any small keyboard with at least two full octaves would work for these exercises.  Ideally you need one with some stiffness to the keys, and preferably one with 44 keys to do these exercises as specified.

Brain science also tells us that practice for 20 minutes at a time with a 2 hour break between sessions is not only just fine, but provides the optimal time for the brain to maximize learning from those 20 minute segments!  More playing at a time is fine, of course, but this pattern is the most efficient for learning.


There are some things I could write about my own music-learning experiences, both on keys and with drumming, but this process is very personal and different in many ways for everyone who plays at any level.  I would rather get my fingers off my computer keys right now and onto my keyboard ones right now, so off I go!


While there is no money for me in my mention of this herbal-vitamin supplement here, I am taking it daily now and find it extremely helpful.  That means a lot to me, so I thought perhaps other readers might wish to take a look:

Source Naturals Theanine Serene with Relora

  • Contains the amino acids L-theanine, to support relaxing brain wave activity
  • Contains taurine to ease tension, as well as the calming neurotransmitter GABA
  • Features magnesium to support muscle and nerve relaxation
  • Contains calming holy basil leaf extract and Relora®to gently soothe away the tension in your body
  • 2 tablets daily, or as recommended by your health care professional


Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.


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