Sunday, October 21, 2007

Vibration Imitation

Critical listening as a key to successful sound production resonates well with me. How else can the lyrebird make its incredible imitations? [Listen to the video clip: ] It's not born with these built-in sounds but with the ability to listen then mimic.

Hearing the lyrebird made me think of several friends who can listen to a guitar lick or a foreign accent, then easily employ it through fingers or voice with amazing results. One of them is dyslexic and this made me wonder if the aural part of his brain was compensating. Maybe so, but does it matter? They're all excellent listeners who analyze how the sound is produced, know their "equipment," then match their output with the sound in their minds. Is it any different for the best producers or comic impersonators? Can we do the same with sufficient practice?

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