STANFORD, California –
A group of prominent geneticists and musicologists from Stanford University recently released the results of a research project entitiled Prenatal Music Exposure. Scientists checked how different music genres affect the pregnancy, and what is their influence on baby’s growth after birth. Some of the results were shocking.
A small group of the researchers focused specifically on rock and metal music, wherein they asked 100 women to exclusively listen to nothing but Pantera, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and Black Sabbath for the entire 9 months of pregnancy. Each day they were required to spend at least 2 hours exposed to the music. Scientists monitored the babies from their time in utero until the time they were 5-years-old, in order to see how the children would grow based on music.
“There were some experiments done in the past that proved music affects brain’s development, but nobody ever noticed such an obvious, physical evidence,” says Dr. Karen Ash from Stanford University. “We noted increased hair growth among children whose mothers listened to heavy metal during pregnancy. Compering to children who were exposed to other genres, the Metal Kids, as we called them, grew their head hair twice as fast. While an average hair of a non-metal child grew approximately one quarter inch monthly, a metal kid’s hair became up to half an inch longer. Several of the children, who are now 5, have hair past their knees.”
Scientists assume it is an example of genetic adaptation. The children grew long hair so they could effectively headbang to the rhythm of heavy metal.
“My daughter has long, black hair and she constantly refuses to have it tied. When she hears metal, she immediately starts moving her head rhythmically, back and forward, just like those guys during concerts,” says Mary Curtis, one of the mothers who participated in the experiment. “It’s kind of cute, but to be honest, I’ve been listening to nothing but heavy metal for almost 6 years now. She won’t let me listen to anything else. It’s really getting to be tiring.”
Scientists are not sure whether all genres can influence the human body in such apparent ways, or if it is restricted to just metal. They are also checking punk music, classical, rap, and opera. The rap babies are the only ones showing any signs of real change in any sort of physical behavior, as they all constantly pull their diaper down below their waste, letting the diaper hang low. Researchers are not sure if this was caused by the music, or just happenstance.