Scientific American: What Makes a Song? It’s the Same Recipe in Every Culture

  • Singer bathed in purple light
    Photo: Maelle Ramsay

From the first soothing lullabies babies hear to the funereal dirges that accompany the deceased, music is a fixture of the human experience. The latest findings on the cultural basis of singing have ascertained that certain song types—whether lullaby, dance, love or healing melodies—turn up in all cultures. And each kind of song has common cross-cultural acoustic features. 

Shannon Dudley, School of Music Ethnomusicology professor, discusses what makes a song in this article published in Scientific American.

Read more in Scientific American