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Tinnitus Symphony

Do you hear what I hear?
  [vote for,

This is inspired in part by another post about migrain sufferers and their symptoms...I have tinnitus, ringing in my ears. It is never quiet, and often a real bother. I have had a carreer performing in symphony orchestras for over twenty years, playing music by the world'sgreat composers, some of whom had this syndrom as well. (Beethoven!) I have never played a work that illustrated what I hear in my head. It would not be just a monotonous droning of sounds, but more like waterfalls, rain, flutes trying to tune, voices speaking in strange languages, shifting like sand dunes. I hear it as a kind of mixed blessing, like the devil's way of luring you into selling your soul. It would be beautiful at first, then develop into a nightmare of cacophony. The audience would have to leave while the music was still playing, since it never stops...I would hope it would serve as a deterrent to stop people from exposing themselves to volume levels that are not healthy. Please, this is not a rant, but a serious idea.
stringstretcher, Nov 07 2003


       I cannot describe my tinnitus other than a buzz, I sympathise / empathise.
po, Nov 07 2003

       My tinnitus is a high pitched ringing sound. It doesn't vary in pitch within the day, although over the ten years or so that I've had it, it's gradually got lower in pitch. I suspect that ten years of playing the clarinet in orchestras and bands where I sat in front of the brass section didn't help. I don't know how I could have avoided this noise and still played - maybe earplugs for the loud movements?   

       <old before my time> I'm always appalled at how loud some public places are - I hate going to bars with wooden floors because the background noise is too loud and I can't hear the conversation. The worst is cinemas where the surround sound hurts my eardrums. </obmt>
hazel, Nov 08 2003

       Ah, and the voices in my head can accompany!
phoenix, Nov 08 2003

       My contribution would be a rather monotonous, buzzy high pitch, much like the sound of a square wave. Fortunately, I can block it out when I concentrate so my contribution will be practically nil.
half, Nov 08 2003

       I will contribute a whistle at around 300 kHz. I don't think any instrument can play that. Maybe an electric drill with a dull bit, trying to go through glass?   

       The real issue is hearing my constant whistle combined with earworms. My current earworm is:   

       ...There was green alligators and long-necked geese, Some humpty-backed camels and some chimpanzees, Some cats and rats and elephants, but sure as you're born...   

       It would still be one heck of a concert! Tickets? Oh, I'll pass, thank-you.
Klaatu, Nov 08 2003

       "300 kHz"? Good news! Your tinnitus is curable. Someone has put a radio transmitter in your head. :)
half, Nov 08 2003

       I've got one of those, too. I'll bet if I put some illustrative text to the music it would help a lot of people understand the tinnitus sufferer's situation. I had to leave the party last night because of the noise... But here in the bakery I am in the midst of the party and enjoying the heck out of it!
stringstretcher, Nov 09 2003

       [half] - 300kHz doesn't necessarily mean the waves are electromagnetic. Typical humans (at least, Russian humans) can detect 200kHz sound waves, if they're applied to the skull.
benjamin, Nov 13 2003

       janeymack, that's mad. i've just come up with a similar idea mysslf while doing research for an art show. except my idea was a party of "tinny" people who get together and just by standing around create a soundscape of tinnitus sounds. the ones with objective tinnitus could let the rest of us have a listen! great fun! To string stretchers symphony i could add a a nice high and low tone. Sure arn't we musicians dead lucky to have our very own interior sound?
justmurph, Jan 23 2004

       Wouldn't this, in turn, cause tinnitus in the performers? Some solution. What you ought to do is perform this quietly someplace where you haven't been asked to do so, ie at a restaurant, in the park, any public place. Bring a humming machine and produce an obnoxious hum. Only transgressive art can express the annoyance of tinnitus.
mongmaster, May 25 2004

       i wonder if it's possible to use tinnitis as a reference note - to tune instruments etc
mrmatt, May 26 2004


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