The Musetude method increases holistic brain and thinking skills


  •  Music theory activates the left brain
  • Composition, improvisation activates the right brain
  • Coordination activates both areas of the brain.

“Incredible way to teach. I’ve spent 10 years in various music lessons for various instruments and none were as productive or fun as today’s. Brilliant! They make learning a new instrument incredibly easy and the teachers are all very kind, happy and highly competent in what they do. I hope to gain more experience with the piano, hopefully through Big Smile as they are incredible.”~ Alex Ward, Rangitoto College, New Zealand

Left and Right Brain based on Dr. Roger Sperry

Nobel Prize winner Roger Sperry, through his research on patients with split brains, discovered that the brain can be divided into 2 hemispheres – Left and Right.

  • The Left Brain is the part that is logical, analytical, linear, verbal, symbolic and rational. It is not concerned with the “whole picture” – only with the component currently at hand.
  • Whereas the Right Brain is visual, non-logical, holistic, intuitive, irrational, spatial, and synthetic. It is not concerned with individual components, but with the bigger picture. It observes patterns rather than details.

Society today is largely dominated by:
a. Left Brain Logic: Global right and localized left – both halves of our brains need to work together in synchrony – the right wholistically perceives a picture and then the left executes it in a logical fashion.
In today’s left brain dominated systems, we are not taught to reflect and see wholistic patterns– to calmly ponder over an issue – those who do, are termed the artists – the rest hurry to break down any problem logically and then tackle it in bite-sized manageable pieces – the result may be an efficient logical thinker at most, but one who fails to match up with the creative genius of a whole brain working synchronously.

b. Lack of Awe = lack of creativity: Our results-oriented, stiff competition, memory and retention based systems dull our sense of awe – a higher cognitive function characteristic of the PFC – the essential emotion of a creative person.
As one of the most famous creative geniuses of all time – Albert Einstein put it, “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.”
Limited by logic, very few dare to take the intuitive leap into realms of genius, happy, playful, cognitive mode; where only childlike awe can take us.

Dr. Wilson shared recent data from UCLA brain scan research studies which shows that music more fully involves brain functions (both left and right hemispheres) than any other activities studied. Dr. Wilson feels these findings are so significant that it will lead to a universal understanding in the next century that music is an absolute necessity for the total development of the brain and the individual

Musetude helps activate the whole brain
The classification of left and right brain holds true even in the prefrontal cortex. The right prefrontal cortex is able to hold multiple parameters, while the left prefrontal cortex integrates these parameters. However each of these areas is further divided into

a.    Dorso-lateral PFC that is responsible for working memory and mental manipulation
b.    Orbito-frontal PFC that is responsible for emotional and other control over the brain

However only one of these can function at a time. If the Orbito-frontal PFC is very busy calming down the lower processes, the Dorso-frontal PFC is dormant – as is the case in most humans. Its phenomenal capacities are rarely tapped, and this amazing supercomputer is reduced to mere surveillance.

Musetude helps stimulate the Left and Right brains to work in harmony using music – this is the key to genius. Co-ordination in musical performance, composition, improvisation, focus on complex theoretical topics, holistic understanding of music helps both left-right brain function during these 2-days which can then be applied in all areas of life. With this comes the limitations and indulgences of the lower cognitive processes of both these brains. The true trick lies in stimulating the PFC to take charge of the brain. It is then capable of orchestrating the remaining parts of the brain to function optimally, like the manager (and not the peon) that it is meant to be.

“I recently attended a half day music workshop, which was effectively a taster session for a quite different sort of music course. It is a wonderful course developed in India, based on neuro-scientific research that has looked at the function of the frontal cortex of our brains. During the 4 hour session I attended, we not only learned a piece of music from scratch, learned to play it by ear and sing along to it but most of us could also play it with both hands within a very short time. Before the end of the session, we all learned to create our own improvisations to the tune, and during another segment of the workshop all of us composed a short piece of music. So much for lack of creativity as a musician!” ~ Article in the Strategic Direction Newsletter Yvonne Mclean (leadership coach)

Research – Music activates the whole brain
Playing an instrument calls upon circuitry from many areas of the brain, says Daniel Levitin, director of the music perception, cognition and expertise laboratory at McGill University in Montreal. For a long time, music was considered a creative “right brain” endeavor. That idea has now gone the way of the Macarena. Music processing is distributed throughout the brain, says Levitin, and playing an instrument, in particular, is an ensemble activity. It involves paying attention, thinking ahead, remembering, coordinating movement and  interpreting constant feedback to the ears, fingers and, in some cases, lips. It’s one of the most complicated tasks that we have,” Levitin says.
The breadth of the musician’s task and the required cognitive effort are probably behind much of the enhancement of other skills, says neuroscientist Laurel Trainor, director of the auditory development lab at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada. Playing an instrument “engages basically most of your brain,” Trainor says. The activity appears to boost executive function, being the boss of your body and mind. Evidence suggests that with musical training comes improved memory, finer motor skills and better attention control — the ability to ignore one thing and pay attention to something else. “Our working hypothesis is that it’s these control processes that are what is key for the transfer effects,” Trainor says.    _the_hemispheres

Northwestern University scientists have pulled together a review of research into what music — specifically, learning to play music — does to humans. The result shows music training does far more than allow us to entertain ourselves and others by playing an instrument or singing. Instead, it actually changes our brains. The paper, just published in Nature Reviews Neuroscience, is a compilation of research findings from scientists all over the world who used all kinds of research methods. The bottom line to all these studies: musical training has a profound impact on other skills including speech and language, memory and attention, and even the ability to convey emotions vocally.

So what is it that musical training does? According to the Northwestern scientists, the findings strongly indicate it adds new neural connections — and that primes the brain for other forms of human communication. In fact, actively working with musical sounds enhances neuroplasticity, the brain’s ability to adapt and change. “A musician’s brain selectively enhances information-bearing elements in sound. In a beautiful interrelationship between sensory and cognitive processes, the nervous system makes associations between complex sounds and what they mean,” Nina Kraus, lead author of the Naturepaper and director of Northwestern’s Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory, explained in a statement to the media. “The efficient sound-to-meaning connections are important not only for music but for other aspects of communication.” –