I’ve been preparing a post centered on R. B McCarthy’s recipe for grilled ginger and rum marinated steak with grilled rum pineapple and island yams. It’s called Samba Pa Ti (Samba for you) because the story that goes with it made me think of my all-time favorite music for “those intimate times” bearing the same name.
If you are like me, music has always been an important part of your life. Well, it turns out there are a lot of studies explaining why you reach for that special trigger song when it’s romance time. You may also consider relocating to Minneapolis or some similar place because quite a few of these studies were located there. Long Winters that far North maybe?
Anyway, One study by Curtis Levang, Ph.D. talks about music increasing one’s libido and he gets backed up by others like researchers at McGill University finding that listening to music can release dopamine in your brain. That’s the “Feel Good Fluid”. Others talk about more brain chemicals but it ll boils down to the fact that the same pleasure center in your head that processes good feeling experiences like orgasms or the effects of recreational drugs (including alcohol) also processes music.
If you’re interested here’s a link to a good article on the subject from Men’s Journal
In part the article says:
Researchers studied images of the brain while subjects listened to music. They discovered that the same areas of the brain light up when listening to our favorite music as when we’re experiencing sexual pleasure. The study showed that, when we jam out, our brains are flooded with dopamine, the pleasure chemical — the same chemical instigated by more scandalous vices.
R.B. taught me not to waste, and that it is often better to use some things than allow them to fade from non-use. This seemed to apply especially when talking about rum, food, and other loves but I’m more than sure he’d agree with the articles. I mean letting all of those already on-board, all-natural brain chemicals go to waste from non-use seems somehow close to criminal. Wouldn’t it be a better use to combine some imagination, a bit of rum, stir in great sexy music, and top with a partner of your choice to manufacture oodles of dopamine before it’s gone? You might just owe it to yourself, or (insert your justification here).
My musical suggestion linked with the upcoming post is Samba Pa Ti by Santana. Using the metaphor of “That Evening” this piece starts off sweet, relaxed, vaguely familiar. It was what first attracted you. The pace reminds me of friendly casual conversation with several pauses that feel like “ Was that a casual brush of her hand, or…” Then it moves smoother than your arm sliding around her into a build-up like a first kiss. The pace switches into a quicker, rhythmically pulsing beat that builds like making love.
I challenge you to create “That Evening” using the recipe in my next post (Samba Pa Ti), a nice smooth rum, and guitar god Carlos Santana. Let the dopamine production begin!
Your mileage may vary…