Composer Develops Scientifically-Backed Music That Will Get Your Cat Purring
Music| | By Jason Owen
“From an age when they were worshipped as gods, to a time when they’re worshipped online, cats have often had to listen to music they didn’t actually like.” That’s what musician and composer David Teie has found. The music we listen to isn’t necessarily enjoyed by our cuddly little Mittens. But Teie has developed something that he says is the purrfect music to a cat’s ears.
Teie is the creator and composer of Music for Cats, a scientifically-backed Kickstarter project that uses natural sounds to create soothing music that cats – and eventually other animals – actually like to listen to.
“For the first time, the world can hear music composed for animals that’s verified by science,” Teie says in video posted to YouTube to promote his Kickstarter page. “How is this possible?”
“By understanding and playing sounds that cats respond to, we elicit feline feelings. Most of our (human’s) sense of music comes from the womb. We form an understanding of rhythm from our mother’s pulse, but cats establish their’s after birth through the sounds around them, like birds chirping, or suckling for milk, or their mother’s purr. Drums evoke heartbeats in our songs. Cats prefer to bump to a different beat.”
To make the songs, Teie said he had to create the music from the ground up, researching and developing the “vocalizations of each species, modify and even invent instruments.” He also enlisted the help of leading animal scientists, including Jagmeet Kanwal, associate professor of neuroscience at Georgetown University. Teie’s 20-plus years with the National Symphony Orchestra and the backing of the scientific world has allowed him to create this stunning collection of songs.
If cat owners are skeptical, Teie’s video demonstrations shows just how much some of Instagram’s most famous cats enjoy the music.
And if the Kickstarter campaign is any indication, the music is something all cat-lovers can love. The campaign has far-exceeded its initial goal and raised over $240,000. CDs of Music for Cats began shipping in April and according to the Kickstarter campaign, digital downloads are available.
But Teie isn’t done yet. He wants to create “species-specific” music for a range of animals, hoping the success of his Music for Cats project spurs new projects down the road.