[78-L] Audio Processing Disorder [was: Older musicians]

Malcolm Rockwell malcolm at 78data.com.invalid
Wed Apr 15 09:54:57 PDT 2015

Having worked unmuffled in high dB environments for many years, for 
which I now pay by having intermittent bouts of  tinnitus, I can attest 
to a similar problem.
When I'd be working onstage, especially if the stage was small (16'x8' 
or smaller) and enclosed on 5 sides, the sound pressure created by the 
physical environment plus  up to 6 musicians with their amplifiers, 
drums and up to 16" speakers
was enough to make me hear up to a half tone sharp when performing and, 
consequently, my voice would be out of tune with the band. What alerted 
me to this, and the only way I could tell this was happening, was 
holding the last note sung as the band faded out at the end of a tune 
and finding it off pitch.
All my life I've had great relative pitch - which can approach "perfect 
pitch" - and I was aghast (I put quotes around "perfect pitch" because I 
do not believe it exists. I believe that all pitch is relative pitch, 
but that's for another discussion).
The solution was, of course, to have the band turn it down (hard to do 
when things are popping along on the stand!) or to use ear protection, 
which I began doing about half way through my professional musical career.
So it makes sense that a steady 110 dB signal within an enclosed space, 
plus peaks, on a regular basis can force the appearance of perceived 
pitch to alter.


On 4/15/2015 4:59 AM, Joe Salerno wrote:
> Reverb should drop in pitch a tiny bit, because of doppler effect, but
> I've never heard it go up.
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doppler_effect
> Incidentally, doppler also affects light (perceived as color shift) and
> EMR.
> Joe Salerno
> On 4/15/2015 12:41 AM, Michael Biel wrote:
>> It is quite probable that Florence Foster Jenkins also suffered from
>> this as there are reports that she was a decent singer when she was
>> young.  I have found in the past 5 or 6 years that the reverberations of
>> final notes of music will go either up in pitch or down in pitch.  It
>> will be all in one direction for a year or two then will disappear for a
>> few months.  Then it will reappear in the opposite direction!  Then
>> clear up again and then go back to the opposite direction again!  As to
>> whether it does anything to notes within the music as it continues I
>> have not noticed yet, but what Rodger and Don mention has given me
>> pause.  I might eventually be restricted to spoken word recordings!
>> Mike (age 68) Biel  mbiel at mbiel.com
>> -------- Original Message --------
>>> Date: Fri, 3 Apr 2015 19:41:14 -0500
>>> From: rjh334578 at gmail.com.invalid
>>> Loss of hearing is surely a big ticket item as well, and that comes in
>>> various forms too. My beloved high school choral director had been a
>>> concert tenor and toured as such after WWII (made two 78s - getting us
>>> solidly on-topic) and sometime in his late fifties he lost tone recognition.
>>> He could still hear to carry on conversations, but could not recognize music
>>> (melodies), much less sing it! I could not grasp that problem at all when
>>> it happened to him, but now have an inkling of what that must feel like.
>>> Rodger
>> From: Don Chichester <dnjchi78 at live.com.invalid>
>> Date: Fri, April 03, 2015 9:54 pm
>> I know his problem. I suffer from it, too. It's called APD, Audio
>> Processing Disorder.
>>> I can't recognize melodies anymore. Hearing aids don't help. I seldom (try to) listen
>>> to my records anymore. Age: 81. Don Chichester

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