January 28, 2023

Charles Darwin once speculated that all animals may share the ability to perceive melody and rhythm. Although the evidence is slim, there are a few studies that support Darwin’s idea.


Charles Darwin once speculated that all animals, beyond just humans, may share the ability to perceive melody and rhythm.

HENKJAN HONING: He was very optimistic, but the empirical evidence is still very meager.

CHANG: Henkjan Honing at the University of Amsterdam says although the evidence is slim, there are a few studies out there that support Darwin’s idea.

HONING: There are some talents that we – some skills, some basic mechanisms that we share with other animals. And one of those – sort of without it, it is actually impossible to make music, and that is this notion of beat perception.


Beat perception. One example – Ronan, the disco-dancing sea lion who bobs her head very enthusiastically to Earth, Wind and Fire.


SHAPIRO: Seriously, watch the video.

CHANG: I will. And then there’s Snowball, the cockatoo who puts most humans to shame groovin’ (ph) to the Backstreet Boys.


SHAPIRO: Well, now a new study adds more evidence to the idea that other animals can synchronize to a beat not just through dancing but through song.


SHAPIRO: That’s the sound of a white-handed gibbon, a type of small ape.


ANDREA RAVIGNANI: We look at rhythmic patterns produced by individuals and what we see is a strong presence of temporal regularity – so tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, like an analog clock or the beating of a metronome.

CHANG: Andrea Ravignani is at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in the Netherlands. He and his colleagues recorded gibbons in a reserve in Thailand and in zoos in Italy.

SHAPIRO: And in addition to learning that gibbons could keep a beat singing solo, they also found that males and females could sync up when belting out songs at the same time.


RAVIGNANI: And we see that they do influence each other, and they overlap above chance. So they are more synchronous than not.

SHAPIRO: The work was published by The Royal Society.

CHANG: Ravignani says the study bolsters the idea that the building blocks of human musical and rhythmic abilities can be found in other species.

RAVIGNANI: Probably there is no species with the whole Lego blocks that constitute human musicality and human rhythmicity, but each and every one of them can be at least found in another species.

HONING: And that’s why this study is so important for our field – because it is an example within the primates that we share beat perception and synchronization with another primate, as Darwin predicted.

SHAPIRO: But Henkjan Honing points out that gibbons are not singing to entertain.

HONING: Gibbons – they do these duets because they need to bond. This is the way they show to each other that they are a couple and they show to the environment that it’s their territory and that they are a couple.

SHAPIRO: He says studies like this could untangle the evolutionary origins of music, which, after all, helps humans sync up, too.


Copyright © 2023 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at www.npr.org for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

pdf free stumble guys cheats for unlimited gems
how to get free tiktok coins in 2023 tecnoguias
hicmos it tiktok followers generator no verification storeion
free coins tik tok live tiktok search
gems for stumble guys apk download steprimo com
free tiktok coins generator 2023 colaboratory google colab
pdf free stumble guys gems generator update 2023 vi7q
list of tiktok free coins 2023 here 3d printable models yeggi
binance has reportedly rejected an offer to invest in troubled crypto
free tiktok coins app generator hacks 2023 without verification ios
gem generator for stumble guys 2023 mytruko md
how to buy tiktok coins in 2023 boosthill
codes stumble guys hack unlimited gems mod cheats generator
best times to post on tiktok for 2023 influencer marketing hub
free tiktok followers 2023 how to get 50000 youtube
tours gratuits coin master 2022 tous les liens des spins du jour
free stumble guys gems generator instant hack updated 2023
free tiktok coins app 2023 read the docs
free tiktok followers free tiktok fans how to get free flowcode
coin master free spin and coin link crazyashwin
pdf free stumble guys cheats for unlimited gems
pdf tiktok coins generator v 87 mapman
continue with tiktok followers generator 2023 free updated
coin master free spins 2023 free spins and coins link january
free stumble guys gems generator 2022 without human verification
pdf free tiktok fans generator free tiktok followers hack app ios
jbqvc sgg tiktok followers 2023 free booster4020 at main
coin master free spins coins daily links january 2023 levvvel
the best android emulator for pc gameloop official 2022
tiktok coins hack 2023 ios no verification photography pexels
continue with into tiktok followers generator 2023 free
coin master free spins and coins generator 2023
pdf stumble guys cheats free unlimited gems generator

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *