This blog is about the practice, science, and experience of mindfulness as applied to music. Being mindful means attending to our day-to-day experience in an open and nonjudgmental way, and appears to be an innate human capacity that can be cultivated through a variety of means and methods. In the last few decades, an impressive body of scientific evidence has emerged suggesting that mindfulness can lead to greater wellbeing, creativity, and richer and more meaningful life experiences. Through this blog, I hope to share my own thoughts, research, and applications of mindfulness as they relate to music making and experiences.


  1. Please keep this up, my school is encouraging us all to do an hour of Mindfulness training/ research a week, and what you present here feels applicable to my music classes.

  2. Mindfulness is perhaps the refutation of Cartesian duality that still holds medicine as its prisoner. Daniel J. Levitan reflects in his book, This Is Your Brain on Music (see p. 86-87) on the miracle of neuroplasticty that the brain has unknown yet expansive capacity to reorganize the “one hundred billion neurons “ in corresponding brain regions. The focus on mindfulness in music, whether listening, creating or teaching music/theory or practice is a sublime opportunity to appreciate human’s unique brain processing and what Elena Mannes wrote in her book The Power of Music: “music really does serve as a gateway into understanding cognition…and illuminating the relationship between rhythm and brain function…goosebumps happen in our brain.” (See Ch.2-3) But beyond the intricacy of processing is the impact on the HPA axis of the neuroendocrine system and the hormones which comfort, create bonds with other playing musicians and the audience, transcending initial performance anxiety as music creates a social and interpersonal bond. Perhaps the elegance in learning a practice modality for mindful reflection practices creates our chance to change outdated reflexive behaviors and attitudes towards self and others, allowing us to create new neurally inspired awareness in creating self empathy that extends to our broader universe. This is the promise of reward for sustained mindful exercise.

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