Tuesday, August 2, 2022

The Effect of Music in Film


Experienced songwriter Siobahn Hotaling holds a BA in creative writing from Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs in New York. Though her full-time job is manager of product design at Global Payments, Siobahn Hotaling enjoys songwriting as a hobby and has released two EPs and several singles. Siobahn has written songs in both the singer-songwriter tradition as well as composing instrumental ambient/techno music. Having obtained a master's degree in psychology from Harvard, she is also interested in the ways that music can affect us on an emotional level.

The music industry has grown to be a multi-billion-dollar industry, but music plays a role in other creative industries, such as filmmaking. Even though films are considered a visual medium of storytelling, music is an essential component of the storytelling process as it can have numerous effects on the audience and story.

Music is processed by the same parts of the human brain that are responsible for triggering and controlling emotions and memories. This makes music an effective tool for conveying a scene's message and creating an emotional connection between the audience and the characters. Filmmakers can tailor the music to the needs of a movie’s scene to elicit the appropriate response. For example, horror films use suspenseful-sounding music to elicit feelings of fear in the audience, whereas romantic films use love songs to convey the characters' emotions.

In addition, music aids in immersing the audience in the story. Filmmakers use sound to create a more authentic atmosphere of the time and place that their films are set. For example, audiences will readily associate the sound of bagpipes with the sprawling green fields of Scotland rather than the busy streets of New York City.

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Sinead O’Connor Unconventional Artist

Siobahn Hotaling is a poet, writer, and musician who is known for albums such as 2012’s “Heart on Fire” and 2015’s “Unguarded.” An avid reader, Siobahn Hotaling selected Sinead O’Connor’s “Rememberings” in a blog post about her favorite reads of 2021.

An intensely personal memoir, the work of the Irish music legend delves into an unconventional career that was marked by blindsiding success and international controversy. O’Connor’s flair for the dramatic was apparent from the start: when a record label executive requested a more traditionally feminine look, O’Connor responded by shaving her head.

Unflinchingly, Sinead O’Connor also delves into the early wounds inflicted by her mother’s frequent beatings and an early habit of compulsively stealing. Sent to a boarding school at a convent, however, she gained musical inspiration from a nun who gave her a Bob Dylan songbook and a guitar. This simple act led her to begin the career that landed her on the world stage.

In an uplifting passage, O’Connor sums up a lifelong process of coming to terms with the past. She notes that she did not really know herself before tearing up a picture of the Pope on national TV, and went on to say, “But I think you’ll see in this book a girl who does find herself.” What Siobahn Hotaling found inspirational about this memoir was that, despite her personal struggles, O'Connor consistently marched through the world with a sense of personal integrity, never allowing others to define her, and always seeking to make the world better.

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Psychological Benefits of Music

Music is an effective tool. It has played a vital part in our capacity to cope with life's greatest highs and lows for generations. A study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry revealed that music could aid with sadness and anxiety, as well as a variety of other mental health conditions.

Music therapy is one of the techniques used by health care experts to assist patients in improving and gaining control over their mental health, functioning, and well-being. As they assist and work with their clients to attain optimal mental health, music therapists utilize a variety of music-making strategies. It is a comprehensive and creative approach to rehabilitation that focuses on the development of constructive and positive coping techniques. It has been shown to be effective in assisting individuals recovering from traumatic events and experiences, as well as those suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD), according to an article published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

Away from music therapy, another psychological advantage of music is that it helps improve memory when studying. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center research, listening to music in the background or while concentrating on anything else can significantly increase cognitive function. According to another study, listening to more rock or cheerful music improves processing speed, whereas listening to both upbeat and downbeat music enhances memory.

Another study shows that listening to classical music helps the mind concentrate. The brain's capacity to process information is enhanced by music at a pace of 60 bpm (beats per minute). A study conducted by Mindlab International has also shown that listening to EDM (electronic dance music) while studying might help you focus. Using music to increase your cognitive capacities may be quite beneficial in everyday life, whether it's for increasing memory or keeping you focused when doing tedious and dull jobs.

Another psychological benefit of music is it helps boost confidence. According to an article published by Healthline, subliminal and ambient music, such as binaural beat music, has been shown to help people with anxiety and poor self-esteem. Using alpha waves between eight and 14 Hz can assist the mind in becoming more focused and confident. Listening to the binaural beat and isochronic tone music is perfect when you're frightened or afraid. The brain is said to sync to the new frequency supplied by the binaural beat, resulting in a happier, more confident state of being.

Further, music has been linked to the reduction of stress and anxiety. Music has a strong influence on both the mind and the body, according to a University of Nevada paper. Faster music may assist you in concentrating and feeling more alert. Upbeat music may lift your spirits and make you feel more optimistic about life. A slower pace helps you feel calmer and let go of the day's strain by calming your mind and relaxing your muscles. Music can help you unwind and cope with stress.

According to Stanford University experts, music has the same power as pharmaceuticals to influence stress-relieving hormones. They further note that music is accessible to practically everyone, making it a simple stress-reduction strategy instead of heavy medication.

Friday, November 12, 2021

Rhyming Isn’t Necessary for all Poems

Singer-songwriter Siobahn Hotaling has been involved in the music industry since the age of 16. She has since released two albums and written hundreds of songs. In addition, Siobahn Hotaling received her B.A. in Creative Writing with a specialization in Poetry from Skidmore College. In recent years, she has expanded from purely written poems to performance poetry. Over the past several years, Siobahn has appeared at several poetry open mics in New York as both a participant and as a featured poet.

While some well-known and classic poems incorporate rhyming and certain modern poems, rhyming is overdone in certain prose. When poems have too many rhymes, the verses sound more musical and come across like a children’s nursery rhyme. This is because the ear places more value on natural speech. Excessive rhymes don’t sound natural, even in poems, unless it is done for the sake of performance. Performance, sometimes called slam poetry, often relies heavily on rhymes to maintain a intriguing cadence or flow to the story.

In the written form of poetry, however, the focus of a good poem is creating something that flows with strong language. If rhyming doesn’t work in a particular poem, it might be better to leave it out and let the words create the movement, so the poem’s language resonates with listeners more strongly. Non-rhyming written poems are usually less predictable, display emotion more accurately, and maintain flow better than rhyme.

The Effect of Music in Film

  Experienced songwriter Siobahn Hotaling holds a BA in creative writing from Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs in New York. Though her f...