|Basic InformationMore InformationLatest NewsLinksBook Reviews|10 Minute Solution: Butt Lift10 Minute Solution: High Intensity Interval Training101 Ways to Meditate29 Gifts3-In-1 Total Body Fitness with Desi Bartlett30 Minute Ab & Butt Blaster5 Day Fit Yoga5 Mega Miles with Toning Band7 Weeks to 100 Push-Ups8 Keys to Body Brain BalanceA.M. EnergyAccessible Yoga for Every Body DVDAfter the Ecstasy, the LaundryAge-Proof Your MindAgeless Mobility: Pain-Free Wellness For LongevityAlmost MeatlessAM/PM YogaAnswers for AristotleAnywhere, Anytime, Any Body YogaAthlete's Guide to YogaAuthentic HappinessAwakening Self-EsteemBalanced AssetsBedroom Body: Booty Burner, Core & Pelvic Floor WorkoutBeginners Yoga DVDBeginning YogaBellyFit ElementsBetter Sex Through YogaBody By BethennyBreath-Centered YogaBreathingBuddhist Boot CampCalm Body Clear MindCalm EnergyCalm Focus JoyChoosing CivilityClassical Pilates Technique DVDComplementary and Alternative Therapies ResearchCore Fusion - Pilates PlusCore Fusion - Pure Abs & ArmsCore Fusion - Thighs & GlutesCore Fusion Body SculptCore Fusion Lean & TonedCore Fusion Power SculptCore Strength PilatesCore Strength Vinyasa Yoga Power Hour with Sadie NardiniCore YogaCreative Core AbsCreative Writing In Health And Social CareDance Off the Inches: Cardio Hip Hop PartyDance the Chakras Yoga WorkoutDeep Stretch / Yin YogaDr. Andrew Weil's Guide to Eating WellDr. Andrew Weil's Guide to Optimum HealthDr. Andrew Weil's Mindbody ToolkitEastern Body, Western MindEasy YogaElement: Barre ConditioningElement: Targeted Toning Pilates for BeginnersElement: Yoga for Stress Relief & FlexibilityElements of Yoga, Earth FoundationsElements of Yoga, Fire DynamicElements of Yoga: Air & WaterEmotional Chaos to ClarityEmotions, Stress, and HealthEvamarie Pilipuf's Yoga Express DVDEvery Day Yoga for Every Body DVDEveryday GreensEveryday Workout for the Everyday WomanEverything VeganExhale Core Fusion 30 Day SculptFamily YogaFast Food for the SoulFat and FuriousFear and Other Uninvited GuestsFit Family Fun CircuitFit in 5 DVDFlat Abs PilatesFlow and YinFlow YogaFluid Power Vinyasa Flow YogaFully PresentGaiam Pilates Slide and Sculpt Kit with DVDGaiam Pilates Total Toning KitGaiam Yoga For Weight Loss KitGet Ripped & ChiseledGood MedicineHealing Through Movement: Pilates Head to ToeHealthy AgingHealthy Sexy Beautiful Kundalini YogaHemalayaa's Yoga for Young Bodies DVDHemalayaa: Bollywood BootyHot Body Cool Mind - Level 1Hot Body Cool Mind: Waking Energy How to Cook Everything VegetarianI'd Rather LaughIn Defense of FoodInsight Yoga Earth: Balancing Yin EnergyInsight Yoga Heaven: Balancing YangInsight Yoga with Sarah PowersIntegrated YogaIntegrative MedicineIntroduction to Ashtanga Yoga DVDIntroduction to Qi YogaIntroduction to Yoga DVDIt's Up to YouJanis Saffell Beverly Hills YogaKids Teach Yoga - Flying EagleKidYogi - Yoga for ChildrenKnowing the Nature of FearKripalu YogaKripalu Yoga Dynamic DVDKripalu Yoga Gentle DVDKundalini Yoga : DVDKundalini Yoga for Beginners & BeyondKundalini Yoga Meditation for Beginners & BeyondKundalini Yoga Meditation for Complex Psychiatric DisordersKundalini Yoga on the BallKundalini Yoga Solar Power All-In-One WorkoutKundalini Yoga to Detox and Destress DVDKundalini Yoga Transformer All-In-One WorkoutKundalini Yoga: Green Energy of the HeartLife MakeoversLifeForce Yoga to Beat the Blues--Level 1LifeForce Yoga to Beat the Blues: Level 2Living BeautifullyLiving Room Yoga DVDLiving Room Yoga: Twist and BendLiving Your Best LifeLiving Your DreamLunar Flow YogaMadhur Jaffrey's World VegetarianMake It Fast, Cook It SlowManage Your Depression Through ExerciseMaui PilatesMayo Clinic Wellness Solutions for Back PainMayo Clinic Wellness Solutions for IBSMayo Clinic Wellness Solutions for InsomniaMean GenesMeditation in a New York MinuteMindful AngerMindfulnessMindfulness for BeginnersMindfulness-Based Treatment Approaches: Clinician's Guide to Evidence Base and ApplicationsMisadventures of a Garden State YogiMozart's Brain and the Fighter PilotNew York PilatesNext-Level PilatesPassionate VegetarianPerfect in Ten AbsPerfect in Ten: PilatesPerfect in Ten: StretchPerfect in Ten: YogaPilates AnatomyPilates for BeginnersPilates for MenPositivityPower to the Peaceful YogaPower YogaPower YogaPower Yoga for HappinessPower Yoga: Core PowerPower Yoga: Fat BurnerPrenatal FlowPrescriptive StretchingPresence Through Movement: Yin YogaPsychology Moment by MomentPure and Simple YogaPure SculptPure Yoga Pilates with Kerry BestwickQi Gong Fire & Water With Matthew CohenQi Gong Flow for BeginnersQi Gong for Low Back PainQi Gong for Upper Back and Neck PainQi Gong for Weight LossQi Workout AM/PMQiGong for Healthy Joints & BonesQiGong IllustratedQuick Blast MethodReach - Upbeat Toning & Flexibility for a Dancer's BodyRed Lotus YogaResistance Stretching With Dara TorresRestorative Yoga PracticeSara Ivanhoe's Taste DVDSaving NormalSelf-CompassionSeven Challenges To Change Your Life DVDSleep BetterSolar Flow Yoga DVDSoupsSparkSpontaneous HappinessSports Hypnosis in PracticeStep By Step Strength TrainingStep by Step Tai ChiStrength & SpiritStrength, Grace, HealingStress ReliefStrong & SculptedStrong Body, Ageless BodySun SalutationsSuper Natural CookingSuper Seniors: Box, Balance, & Lift SupersurvivorsSurf Yoga SoulSybel's Yoga For Sports & FitnessSybel's Yoga For Sports & Fitness Vol 2Tai Chi for Beginners with Grandmaster William C. C. ChenTaming Your Inner BratTeach Yourself MeditationTeen YogaTeenYogi DVDTen Minutes to RelaxThe Accidental VeganThe Angelica Home KitchenThe Art and Science of MindfulnessThe Athlete's Guide to YogaThe Beginner's Guide to Healthy EatingThe Best Things You Can EatThe Booty Barre -Total New BodyThe Breathing FieldThe Cafe Brenda CookbookThe Complete Book of Raw FoodThe Complete Vegetarian HandbookThe Easy Yoga WorkbookThe Feeling Good HandbookThe Five Things We Cannot Change ...The Happiness of PursuitThe Healing Remedies SourcebookThe Healing Remedies SourcebookThe Health Psychology HandbookThe Healthy KitchenThe Heart of YogaThe Indian VegetarianThe Jewel Tree of TibetThe Joy of MeditatingThe Kettlebell BoomerThe Little Book of Healthy TeasThe Little Soy BookThe Little Yoga BookThe Mood CureThe Mozart EffectThe Myth of Freedom and the Way of MeditationThe Perfect ExerciseThe Pilates Workout JournalThe Playful BrainThe Quest for Peace, Love, and a 24'' WaistThe Spa DeckThe Spirit of Buddhist MeditationThe Stoic Art of LivingThe Way of StretchingThe Weight of the NationThe Well-Tuned BrainThe Will to Live and Other MysteriesThe Yin Yoga KitThink SmartTotal AstangaTotal Health the Chinese WayTotal PilatesTotal-Body ToningTransform Yourself with Jivamukti YogaTransformative YogaTrudie Styler's Warrior YogaV-Core WorkoutVegan ExpressVegan for LifeVegetarian Turkish CookingViva Vegan!Walk It Off in 30 DaysWalk to the HITS Radio RemixesWalkingWalking a Literary LabyrinthWatch Me Do YogaWeight Loss Cardio KickWellbeingWhat We Say MattersWhen Things Fall ApartWriting in FlowYin and Yang YogaYin Yoga DVDYogaYogaYoga & Pilates Workouts for DummiesYoga 4 TeensYoga : Beginners Flow for EveryoneYoga AnatomyYoga and PsychologyYoga as MedicineYoga Beauty BodyYoga Bliss HipsYoga Body : Lean & Defined Total Body WorkoutYoga By Teens DVDYoga Emergency DVD: Arms & ShouldersYoga Emergency DVD: BackYoga Emergency DVD: Full Leg StretchYoga Emergency DVD: HipsYoga Flow DVDYoga for AnxietyYoga for Back CareYoga for BeginnersYoga for Energy & Stress ReliefYoga for EveryoneYoga for MeditatorsYoga for OsteoporosisYoga for Pain ReliefYoga for Regular GuysYoga for Strength & EnergyYoga for Strength & FlexibilityYoga for the Young at HeartYoga for Your WeekYoga In BedYoga in BedYoga Inside Out: Go DeeperYoga Inside Out: The Healing WayYoga Journal's Yoga for StressYoga Journal: Yoga for Strength and Toning DVDYoga Link: Core IntegrationYoga Link: Hip HelpersYoga Link: Shoulder Shape-UpYoga on DemandYoga Quick FixesYoga SanctuaryYoga SculptYoga ShaktiYoga Therapy for Back PainYoga Therapy Prescriptions - 60 Health Restorative SequencesYoga To Go's Yoga Quick Fixes DVDYoga to the Rescue - Feel Good from Head to ToeYoga to the Rescue for Back PainYoga to the Rescue for Neck & ShouldersYoga to the Rescue for Pain-Free Back, Neck & ShouldersYoga Weight Loss for DummiesYoga: Freedom from Back PainYoga: Relief from Neck and Shoulder PainYoga: Spirit of Vinyasa FlowYogabodyYogawomanYou Can Think Yourself ThinYou'll See It When You Believe ItYour Body Breakthru - Your Best Body Circuit DVDYour Brain on FoodYour Brain on Food: How Chemicals Control Your Thoughts and Feelings,Your Miracle BrainZen Encounters with Loneliness
by Don Campbell
Review by Anne Philbrow on Mar 26th 2002
The basic message of this book is
that music is a Good Thing, or as Don Campbell more poetically puts it: 'Music helps plants grow, drives our
neighbors to distraction, lulls children to sleep and marches men to war.' He also describes it fittingly as 'the
speech of angels and atoms'.
He is preaching to an already
converted reader in my case. Having
spent many hours playing the piano during a lengthy period of reactive
depression, I am well convinced of the therapeutic aspects of music.
Unfortunately, the importance of
music is not universally understood as vital for one's mental (and indeed,
physical) well-being. It is often
relegated to the 'hobby' category; amusing, but not significant. Here in the UK, many schools fail to
recognize it as a serious subject, where it is regarded as an 'extra', a
frippery. Not a serious core subject
alongside English, Math or a science.
Campbell illustrates his thesis with
wide ranging documentation of examples where music has apparently helped to
heal people on a physical and mental level, raise their IQ and emotional
His illustrations run from
scientific evidence through to anecdotal.
Mostly he cites experiments that have been academically written up both
in mainstream medical journals and alternative therapy literature. All sources are given.
Some of the stories and that is
what much of it is, stories about how music has dramatically changed someone's
life are less rigorous, especially where music is used in conjunction with
other therapies. There is also a New
Age feel to some of the writing, which is not to my taste.
It is difficult to know where to
start with this book, as its good qualities are also its deficiencies, being a
vast collection of observations and anecdotes.
It is almost like reading a mini-encyclopedia.
Campbell sets the scene by
describing the physiological effects of sound, and distinguishes between
hearing and listening. The alarming
effects of sound pollution are well documented. For example, (pp 36/7) 'A study at a public elementary school
found that, in the course of four years, students whose class faced the
elevated subway were eleven months behind students not directly exposed to the
noise of passing trains. When the
students were moved, their achievement levels returned to normal.'
Common sense, really. If we are busy filtering out or being
distracted by excessive sound, we are inevitably going to find it difficult to
concentrate. Yet such considerations
are routinely ignored in schools and workplaces.
A third of the 60 million Americans
identified as having hearing loss, have lost it through exposure to loud
sounds. According to Dr Samuel Rosen,
the average 60 year old in traditional African society hears as well, or
better, than the average 25 year old North American.
Campbell writes a lot about the work
of the Tomatis Centre, Paris. The
French doctor, Alfred Tomatis has tested more than 100,000 clients in his
listening centers for aural, psychological, learning and vocal disabilities. In the early 1950's, Tomatis discovered that
the fetus is capable of hearing while in the womb, despite the skepticism of
Later he developed the idea of Sonic
Birth. He had been approached by a
medical colleague who thought he could help a 12-year-old autistic child whom
the colleague thought was 'psychologically not yet born.' Tomatis simulated aural womb conditions by
playing filtered high frequency sounds of the mother's voice which resulted in
the boy instantly switching off the room light and getting physically very
close to his mother in according to Tomatis' interpretation an effort to
re-create the conditions within the womb.
Remarkably, 'It was the first time in ten years the boy had shown any
signs of recognition for his mother, much less affection.'
Why 'The Mozart Effect'? Tomatis has experimented and continues to
experiment with many different musical forms, but has the best consistent
results with Mozart's music. Tomatis
says 'Mozart is a very good mother...The powers of Mozart, especially the
violin concertos, create the greatest healing effect on the human body'. Campbell devotes a short section describing
the circumstances of Mozart's life as a child prodigy, himself surrounded by
music in utero, which Campbell feels partly explains why Mozart's music
is particularly helpful in healing.
Campbell makes many fascinating
observations on how music can affect every aspect of everyday life, through the
physical effects of the vibrations to the emotional effects. There is a lot of emphasis on healing. In particular, Campbell describes and
recommends toning (i.e., 'making sound with an elongated vowel for an extended
period'), the practice of which dates back at least to the fourteenth
century. He describes people who have
eased physical pain, eliminated migraines, lowered blood pressure and relieved
insomnia through toning. I tried toning
through my last migraine, but got bored quickly and reached for the pills, so I
can't attest to its effectiveness or otherwise.
One of the endearing aspects of the
book is that it is dotted with simple exercises and suggestions how you can use
music to improve your own life, or just have fun with it. For instance, you are shown how to sing a
simple Gregorian chant, and at the other extreme, encouraged to make up your
own rap. I tried (and enjoyed) both.
This book is packed with fascinating
insights on the psychology of music, and Campbell combines a readerly approach
with solid research. It is a joy to
read a book by someone whose own love of music and desire to share it is
apparent on every page.
A copy should be given to every
hard-bitten educationalist who has a hand in concocting school curricula,
politicians and planners. Campbell
describes a business executive who learnt shamanic drumming; perhaps it should
be a staple of every business course, to remind students not to lose their
souls in the cynical world of commerce.
Fundamentally, I do not think that
appreciation and performance of music needs further justification. It sings for itself.
© 2001 Anne Philbrow
Anne Philbrow writes of herself:
I am a self-employed video producer and teach music and
drama on a part-time basis. I have a BA Hons in Philosophy from UCW, Aberystwyth,
UK and have done postgraduate research in Moral and Social Philosophy,
specializing in Animal Rights. In my spare time, I do some freelance writing
(book and theater reviews, articles) and have contributed to Philosophy in
Review. I am a user of mental health services.