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The Place Principle

by Greg Crowther


From the apex to the base,
Every pitch has its place!


Georg von Bekesy's research on the human cochlea established the "place principle": different sections of the basilar membrane and their corresponding hair cells are sensitive to different frequencies of sound. The apex of the cochlea is most sensitive to low pitches; the base is most sensitive to high pitches. This range is encapsulated in the jingle (written for BIOL 220 at the University of Washington) by singing "apex" as a low note, "base" as a high note, and "Every pitch has its place" as an ascending arpeggio musically traversing the octave between "apex" and "base."

Other Files

MP3 (demo)

score (with melody play-back)