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SpiritWriter

Why do certain singing voices make us cry?

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Sometimes I hear a song and when they hit a certain note or string of notes I actually cry. I can get teary eyed but sometimes it leads to sobbing (I've never went overboard with it but like a brief sob). I can feel it deep in me like something of real sadness or joy. So what are your thoughts about why this happens?

I think its a mixture of a pride for the person singing, realizing how talented humans actually are and can be, but the actual notes and the certain way they are administered, I think also do something to us chemically...

Edited by SpiritWriter
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Oh, girl, I have experienced body wracking sobs with some songs. And basically, the entire final 10 min of Les Mis does that to me without fail. It was a very embarrassing experience for my two best friends who took me to see the film Les Mis. :blush: I warned them, but they had no idea how bad I can actually be. :no:

For me, it's the tune, combined with the lyrics. The beauty of the voice is secondary because I cry at Kid Rock's "Amen". When the message pulls at your innermost emotions and frustrations, and you can identify with it on a deep personal level, it shakes your very soul.

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Yoko Ono's voice would make anyone cry... for a different reason...

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Yoko Ono's voice would make anyone cry... for a different reason...

Plenty more where she came from too!

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I cry everytime I watch "gone with the wind", nothing to do with Vivien Leigh or Clarke Cable, just a very good story line and good acting on their parts.

Edited by freetoroam
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Yoko Ono's voice would make anyone cry... for a different reason...

Her voice makes me cry until I throw up in mouth a little. :whistle:

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But what about the philosophy/psychology of the whole thing? What's your interpretation of the reason it happens?

Do certain songs make you cry, or certain voices? When I hear a song that makes me feel that way I get an instantaneous deep feeling of sadness and joy and the tears come quickly. I will sob but then stop myself. This could turn in to a real cry if I let myself. These types of cries are good to have on occasion but they are usually caused by pain, sometimes also as a release of the spirit, these are often seen as spiritual experiences, that's why there is so much falling out in the church.

I agree that it has much to do with the message and I don't think I could feel that way about a song that was against anything that I thought was song-worthy, but more than that it is a certain range of singing. I think this is expressed most often in opera music. It could be also that this range is different for different people.

When I hear a stranger sing, there is nothing sad. Why would I cry?

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A friend of mine used to cry when she heard the song 'Edelweiss' from 'The Sound of Music' film. That's because it always reminded her of her mother, it was the last film she took her to before she died. If we think hard enough I'm sure a lot of us can relate to music we hear in one way or another, happy or sad.

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It does seem like some voices convey more emotion .. not sure if it's because it's coming more from the heart of the singer, or due to their singing technique . I think both.

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I don't know but I when I watched The School of Rock movie for the first time, I did feel a lump in my throat, like I wanted to cry. I think the OP's on to something here...

Edited by dlonewolf85

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All the senses can trigger emotional response. Don't know the science of why though.

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I was listening to Whitney Houston today and I do have to say she is still my favorite singer and her voice makes me cry.

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I have always loved music, it has always been important to me. I love all kinds from heavy rock to classical, Western and Eastern. I can hear a particular piece of music and feel a sort of tingling at the base of my neck and some music makes me shed a tear, music seems almost a language in its self, a communication beyond words. The words spoken by Morgan Freeman say it probably better than I could.

Music has been my best friend and at some times in my life my only friend. Why music does this I am not sure, a few things come mind like String theory for instance, the universe vibrating? Is it a fundamental element?The first Mahatma I heard talk called ‘Ashokanand ‘ way back in the 70s talked about a universal vibration that was centred in our hearts, that all other vibrations come from. The ‘Shabd’ the deep inner sound of the soul heard through deep meditation? Pythagoras called it ‘the music of the spheres’ seems there maybe far more to music than we can imagine. But beyond any (mad) theory I may have I can and do experience the beauty of music every day, such a great pleasure. I have had a week of Classical music since talking to a friend about the music we like and she shared some Mozart with me. Here’s a couple I have been blasting this week.

[media=]

the flower duet. Sorry both clips are classical but its been a classical week of music for me. Edited by sutemi
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Sometimes, the sound of the singing translates almost literally into a physical expression of emotion. When you sob or laugh, it is a musical sound with a rhythm and a melody. It starts out high and goes down in steps as you go ah-haa-haa-haa, not like laughing or giggling, which starts low and bubbles upwards. The sobbing melody seems to be in a minor key, and the giggle melody is a major key (although I'm not 100% certain of this and would have to analyze a lot of recordings to prove it). A giggle is like an upwards-moving arpeggio in a major key, and a sob a downwards-moving minor arpeggio.

If you hear foreign people talking, and you don't know their language, you still recognize their tones of voice, and you recognize their laughter and their crying. The sounds of laughter and crying are universal to people of all cultures and all languages, so this musical 'melody' is somehow hard-programmed into our brain, unvarying and unchangeable. We also automatically recognize the cry of a whimpering dog or other animals.

When you hear a sound, your body tries to imitate the sound in your own voice box, and sometimes the sound requires a kind of strain which is like crying. It's a way of empathizing with the person who made the sound - you try to do the same thing they're doing, and you remember the emotion you felt the last time you made that type of sound. Making the same sort of movement in your throat triggers the memory of emotion.

I was reading a book called 'The World Until Yesterday,' by Jared Diamond. In the past, before people traveled a lot, before there were roads and cars, it was normal to have small tribes of people who spoke many different languages living next to each other. If you encountered a random stranger in the woods and you didn't speak each other's language, you could still recognize the sounds of their emotions in their tone of voice. This could save your life. Your life depended on knowing whether this stranger was a friend, or an enemy who was going to kill you. You could read their emotions in the sound of their voice if they talked to you and you didn't understand their language. You could understand the universal music of their voice.

You can also hear a 'nervous' or 'distrusting' tone of voice too, but I don't know its melody. I think it is a downward moving pitch.

When a song makes me cry, I feel like I hear the faint echoes of something I desperately need and cannot find in this life. I feel like it's something I lost a long time ago in my childhood. It's something that I cannot express, but others can.

Different people are moved by different songs because our personality types are different. Some people love songs that I hate, and I love songs that other people hate (this is a problem at my workplace, because other people decide what we get to hear on the radio all day long!). I cried with Les Miserables too. For me, the words have to match the emotion that I am struggling to express but cannot express. I haven't gone hunting for music in the past few years, long story, but I desperately need to - I don't have any music to listen to at the moment. I know I cried when I listened to 'We Will Become Silhouettes' by The Postal Service. '...where the light bends at the cracks, and I'm screaming at the top of my lungs, pretending that the echoes belong to someone, someone I used to know.' But I'm sure other people will hate that song and won't feel the slightest emotion from it at all. People are different.

I need to write my own music, but don't have enough free time at the moment.

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Music that you find pleasing is known to trigger the release of dopamine in the brain hence why people can get goosebumps listening to certain music.

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Very good question.

The way I see it, sounds can trigger emotional responses. The part of the brain that interprets your senses also store emotional memories.

Every wonder why the smell of pine or roasted walnuts remind people of Christmas? Or the sound of a drill might trigger response of fear from those that hate going to the dentist?

There may be a certain connection to vague memories and certain sounds, especially from music.

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I'm pleased to say that no human singing voice has ever moved me to tears and I much prefer music which isn't tainted by the human voice.

Edited by aimlesswalk

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My parents said that I used to cry when I was a kid and heard a few songs from Englebert Humperdink and Fleetwood Mac, although I still like their music. I just wonder though is it the song or the somber melody that is having that effect or if you believe in past lives, maybe something tragic happened in a past life while the song was playing (provided the song was old enough!). What do I know, if I'm feeling a bit somber, I put on some Pantera or Amon Amarth and it snaps me right out of it....

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I don't think I've ever cried from a singing voice. Beefcake, BEEFCAKE!

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Two things...

One, I went to a one woman play about Moms Mabley and old time African American comedian, incase you didn't know, I didnt know, (first female to headline on the Apollo, etc...) and this lady was singing her little butt off. She did a song tribute to Abraham Lincoln, JKF, Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King. She was tremendously talented for all of her songs but this was my fav song she performed. Now this woman began to cry during her performance and I said: yeah its about time.. I can never imagine so much beauty coming out of my body and being able to handle it. I love this ladies song and in glad that it made her cry.

Two: I had a dream last night that I was singing incredibly well and it wasnt my voice singing. My voice sounded like a voice that was indistinguishable between a woman and a man's. Sometimes it did sound like a man but it was not low or baratone. But at the same time it was me singing. I was alone and singing into an empty space and it sounded really good. Sometimes I would sing quietly and that was when I was questioning myself and other times I was really belting it out and during those times it was like I was deeper into the dream if that makes any sense. While I was singing I saw myself standing in front of me, but I was faced forward so I could see the back of my head, I was two places at once actually, the song was coming from me but also from myself, I guess sort of like an echo in front of me, and that distance was further into my dream.. other parts of my dream were going on behind me, in front of me, as this was happening it was sort of as if the self I saw in front of me was through a closet door, or some seperation type deal and both myself and the area I was singing into had a blue and white coloration. It seemed to be a bit mysterious, but lovely, perhaps a bit like silvery moon light. But when I woke up I did think of this thread because I was singing really good, but maybe not good enough to cry about.

I should have put that in the dream thread but oh well.

:)

Peace all

Edited by SpiritWriter

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From my favourite theatrical soundtrack. Although no singing voice, the start part is just a real tear jerker. Just an amazing and beautifully composed piece of music.

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Sometimes, the sound of the singing translates almost literally into a physical expression of emotion. When you sob or laugh, it is a musical sound with a rhythm and a melody. It starts out high and goes down in steps as you go ah-haa-haa-haa, not like laughing or giggling, which starts low and bubbles upwards. The sobbing melody seems to be in a minor key, and the giggle melody is a major key (although I'm not 100% certain of this and would have to analyze a lot of recordings to prove it). A giggle is like an upwards-moving arpeggio in a major key, and a sob a downwards-moving minor arpeggio.

If you hear foreign people talking, and you don't know their language, you still recognize their tones of voice, and you recognize their laughter and their crying. The sounds of laughter and crying are universal to people of all cultures and all languages, so this musical 'melody' is somehow hard-programmed into our brain, unvarying and unchangeable. We also automatically recognize the cry of a whimpering dog or other animals.

When you hear a sound, your body tries to imitate the sound in your own voice box, and sometimes the sound requires a kind of strain which is like crying. It's a way of empathizing with the person who made the sound - you try to do the same thing they're doing, and you remember the emotion you felt the last time you made that type of sound. Making the same sort of movement in your throat triggers the memory of emotion.

I was reading a book called 'The World Until Yesterday,' by Jared Diamond. In the past, before people traveled a lot, before there were roads and cars, it was normal to have small tribes of people who spoke many different languages living next to each other. If you encountered a random stranger in the woods and you didn't speak each other's language, you could still recognize the sounds of their emotions in their tone of voice. This could save your life. Your life depended on knowing whether this stranger was a friend, or an enemy who was going to kill you. You could read their emotions in the sound of their voice if they talked to you and you didn't understand their language. You could understand the universal music of their voice.

You can also hear a 'nervous' or 'distrusting' tone of voice too, but I don't know its melody. I think it is a downward moving pitch.

When a song makes me cry, I feel like I hear the faint echoes of something I desperately need and cannot find in this life. I feel like it's something I lost a long time ago in my childhood. It's something that I cannot express, but others can.

Different people are moved by different songs because our personality types are different. Some people love songs that I hate, and I love songs that other people hate (this is a problem at my workplace, because other people decide what we get to hear on the radio all day long!). I cried with Les Miserables too. For me, the words have to match the emotion that I am struggling to express but cannot express. I haven't gone hunting for music in the past few years, long story, but I desperately need to - I don't have any music to listen to at the moment. I know I cried when I listened to 'We Will Become Silhouettes' by The Postal Service. '...where the light bends at the cracks, and I'm screaming at the top of my lungs, pretending that the echoes belong to someone, someone I used to know.' But I'm sure other people will hate that song and won't feel the slightest emotion from it at all. People are different.

I need to write my own music, but don't have enough free time at the moment.

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Holy heck

longhairlove This is so spot on! Every word makes so much sense to my situation. Thank you so much for posting this. I've been racking my brain trying to figure out why this keeps happening to me. You are the first to explian why it really happens to me without saying "It's because you have bi polar" (true story).

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Although also no singing voice, this is a good example of how music can mesmerize an audience, and communicate deep felt emotions.

Schumann - 'Traumerei' (memories of childhood) - Vladimir Horowitz, piano

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Music that you find pleasing is known to trigger the release of dopamine in the brain hence why people can get goosebumps listening to certain music.

This song makes one want to cry the lady who sang it had a hard life. La Vie En Rose Edith Piaf had one of those voices. When one sings sometimes you put all that happened to you iin life in your songs. If you feel it you sing it.

[media=]

[/media] Edited by Justice please

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