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Author:  Frost [ Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Synesthesia

Wikipedia wrote:
Synesthesia is a neurological condition in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway.

Synesthesia can come in various different forms that you can read about on the Wikipedia page, but the one I'm going to talk about because it's relevant to ME is sound -> color synesthesia. Since about the time I was a preteen, I heard music as colors depending on the mood, instrumentation, vocals, etc of the song, but it was only recently that I found out this had a scientific name or anything. Does anybody else experience this or another form of synesthesia?

To give you a taste of what listening to music is like for me, here's a few songs from Youtube and the colors I hear while listening to them:
-Madonna's "Give Me All Your Luvin'" - primary color is yellow, secondary highlights include white, brown and beige.
-Kylie Minogue's "Confide in Me" - completely monochrome, but primarily white with black and gray accents.
-Pink Floyd's "Great Gig in the Sky" - a mix of dusky pink and purple against black.
-Within Temptation's "Faster" - black and forest green mix primarily, bright yellow/white secondary
-Live's "All Over You" - blood red and black mixed
-Led Zeppelin's "Thank You" - blue and white, with some sprinkles of gold and silver

Author:  DNA [ Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Synesthesia

I actually don't experience anything like this myself, but I have heard about different varieties of this before...I think there was something on History Channel (or some other network) about it, but I didn't know there was a name for it either until you mentioned it just now.

That's...actually pretty interesting, really; it sounds like you listen to music and interpret as color - or, to put it succinctly, you hear color - do I follow you correctly? I'm not sure how cool that is or not, but what is it even like to hear color? Is it strange? enthralling? irritating?
Then again, I suppose each person would take that kind of thing differently, but I'm interested to know more about the subject.

Author:  Haunted Water [ Wed Apr 18, 2012 3:47 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Synesthesia

I have a similar effect of this, which, isnt surprising, since I f****d with my brain so much that I now have a slew personality and mental... Whatchyamacallits.
I see text (i.e.: Lyrics of the song) when I listen. Or, occasionally, I visualize the actions portrayed in the lyrics, which is very disturbing everytime I listen to Down With The Sickness, but its such a good song!

Author:  redt [ Wed Apr 18, 2012 5:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Synesthesia

I heard about this in Psychology. I always thought it was awesome and now I'm jealous. But yeah from what I remember it's where some of the "wiring " for senses in your brain gets crossed. Saw a video where a woman would watch rainstorms and have her own personal light show.

Curious if you did anything to cause it since you weren't born with it. Most people born with it don't realize it's abnormal until they're told so, but some people do develop it over time.

Author:  Frost [ Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Synesthesia

I don't think anything really caused it for me. I only noticed that songs sounded like colors starting when I was about 13 or 14 years old, although that's when I really started listening to music obsessively. I mean, I guess a lot of times the colors I hear are inspired by the color schemes of the song's album covers or music videos, but there are other times where what I hear in my head is wildly different from the video. (Most of "Confide in Me" is full of gaudy 90's colors for example.)

DNA: I love music and I love color so it's definitely not irritating for me. It kind of makes each song more special since no two songs are the same combination of colors. It's also interesting because Wikipedia says that synesthesia varies from person to person; I've had a couple of other online friends who hear color and our opinions rarely agreed despite talking about the same song. Sometimes I can listen to a song cold and come away from it thinking "Oh, this is a [color] and [color] song," but a lot of times I usually have to listen a few times before a clear picture of the song's aura stands out in my head, which is why I only have detailed color descriptions for songs that I listen to a lot.

In my head it's kind of like those media player graphic equalizer animations. Only instead of green electricity and purple fire and stuff, it's more like a landscape of one or two main colors and then accent colors based on the details of the song.

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