No pop please: Chimps like Indian music
No Pop Please: Chimps Like Indian Music. Chimpanzees prefer silence to music from the West, but like to listen to the different rhythms of music from Africa and India, says a study.
Chimpanzees prefer silence to music from the West, but like to listen to the different rhythms of music from Africa and India, says a study.
Previous research has found that some non-human primates prefer slower tempos, but the current findings may be the first to show that they display a preference for particular rhythmic patterns, according to the study.
When African and Indian music was played near their large outdoor enclosures, the chimpanzees spent significantly more time in areas where they could best hear the music.
When Japanese music was played, they were more likely to be found in spots where it was more difficult or impossible to hear the music.
The African and Indian music in the experiment had extreme ratios of strong to weak beats, whereas the Japanese music had regular strong beats, which is also typical of Western music.
"Chimpanzees may perceive the strong, predictable rhythmic patterns as threatening, as chimpanzee dominance displays commonly incorporate repeated rhythmic sounds such as stomping, clapping and banging objects," de Waal explained.
Sixteen adult chimps in two groups participated in the experiment at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory University.
The study appeared in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition.