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Re: Musician's IQ

What do you call a drummer with only one stick…


    ….a conductor.


Drummers need to focus on a lot more than just the rhythm.  They also need to focus on the interactions between musicians, phrasing, counter phrasing, dynamics, the idiosyncrasies across musicians, audience reaction (or lack thereof), the comfort level of the singers (a slight tempo adjustment may be needed when the vocalist can’t get out all of the words), balance, blend, technique, tone quality, tuning, psychoacoustical conflicts in the bands mix, reaction time, etc., etc.


Actually, it takes a good measure of skill and a reasonable intellect to be a drummer.


I’d keep them in your study.




House Ear Institute


From: AUDITORY - Research in Auditory Perception [mailto:AUDITORY@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Harriet B. Jacobster, AuD
Sent: Friday, August 08, 2008 2:24 PM
To: AUDITORY@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: Musician's IQ


Some more thoughts (promised I'd have them).
Drummers v keyboardists v wind players.  What are the differences among them and does this affect "IQ?"  Drummers (or in general percussionists) focus is on the rhythmic aspect of music.  Keyboardists have to coordinate two lines of music and two hands and extreme muscle fine muscle control.  Wind players have just one line of music and, well, less two-handed than keyboardists. 
And where conductors fit it?  They have to hear a multitude of timbres, notes, rhythms, etc., etc. Makes me dizzy.
The variables are overwhelming.

More to follow, I'm sure.

Harriet B. Jacobster, Au.D.
Board Certified in Audiology
Lyric Audiology, pllc
"Bringing Words and Music to Your Ears"

Brian Gygi wrote:


"Musicians have a bigger IQ than other people."


Hmm...not the musicians *I* used to play with.  Certainly not the drummers.


Seriously, I don't see any reason to think that musicians would have *higher* IQs than "other people."  The mental abilities measured by the IQ - analytical thinking, memory capacity - are not unique to musicians. One might argue that you cannot be a good musician without them, but then you get into the slippery definition of what is a "good" musician, e.g., what are "right notes" (how about Charlie Parker when he was skroning)?  What is musicianship?


Of course classically trained musicians who have had hours of ear training, sight reading and been forced to memorize long pieces will likely score better on the IQ test than normal controls, but is that an ability related to being a musician or just a result of being forced to do mentally challenging tasks?  Are these people any more musicians than a naturally gifted musician who cannot sight read and is by most measures dumb as a post?


If you operationalize the definitions quite a bit you might get a testable hypothesis.  But my advice - don't test drummers.


Brian Gygi

Veterans Affairs Northern CAlifornia Health Care System

Martinez CA

-----Original Message-----
From: Daniel Ladwig [mailto:clarinetbuddy8@xxxxxxxxx]
Sent: Friday, August 8, 2008 01:10 PM
To: AUDITORY@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Rethinking my psychology seminar project


I originally planned to do my project on intelligence differences between musicians and non-musicians..but I thought that was too fague and we already know that musicians have a bigger IQ then other people.
I decided to do my study on..well here is my hypothesis: More persistent musicians have higher IQ's then less persistent musicians.
So instead of looking at people who do and don't play music..we can look at people that both play but some musicians may be at reading, making the right sounds and putting a lot of musicianship into the music. Think of great musicians like Charlie Parker and Gene Krupa..just by listening to how they play, you must believe that they were geniuses.
I was think of taking 25 good musicians and 25 not so good musicians and give them some kind of IQ test and playing ability test..not sure what kind yet..got any tips on that? There are probably factors involved? (maybe being lazy, not wanting to practice or wanting to be the best...other than a not so good musician's IQ.) Maybe some physiological and mentel aspects involved.

If not that idea, do you have any good ideas around that kind of field?? 
If you have any tips or ideas and places where I can get some research on these narrow topic PLEASE let me know! If you have any other good idea also please let me know!

I'm a psychology major at CSU Chico working on my BA right now. I plan to go to a grad school to get my Ph.D in Cognitive Neuroscience.
Thank you!

~Dan T. Ladwig