This will probably not surprise people who love rock n ‘roll or blues, but researchers have determined that bass is the backbone of any song. It turns out that our brains can find the rhythm more easily when it is played in a lower tone. In other words, bassists are much more important to the structure of a song than previously thought.
According to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, people are more sensitive to changes in the bass notes of a bass guitar than the high notes of other instruments.
A team of researchers led by psychologist Laurel Trainor of McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, found that our brains are better able to hear mistakes and changes in the lowest notes.
The team used EEG (also known as electroencephalography) to see how our brain reacts to different notes. They found that participants were more able to detect if the music was cut off when they listened to low notes compared to high notes. People also tapped a lot more fingers with songs in lower tones.
So, it’s official, we all have to give more credits to the bass players. The bass holds and binds a song, filling it with depth and gravity.
Like a taco without shell. Or a pizza without dough. Of course, the toppings can get all the attention, but without a shell or crust, you’d just have a stack of ingredients with nothing to collect them. Without them, in other words, the music would be rather boring and lacking in structure.
When we listen to songs with heavy bass, we feel more powerful and confident – as if we could tackle this major presentation at work or exercise more at the gym. Remember next time you will need some extra motivation!
The world’s bassists can not touch as many fans or hugs. There are no flashy solos, but bassists provide the backbone of any song. Think of Led Zeppelin’s “Dazed and Confused” without the magic of John Paul Jones. Or “Hypnotize” of Biggie without the soft bass line that holds her.
Our lives would be gray and boring without the rhythm of the bass. So, here’s a toast for all bassists. We promise to pay more attention to you during our next concerts!