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Working Like a Dog


As evidence that the world has amazing technology and plenty of surplus wealth, a college professor has decoded one of music’s mysteries:

The opening chord to A Hard Day’s Night is also famous because, for 40 years, no one quite knew exactly what chord Harrison was playing.

There were theories aplenty and musicians, scholars and amateur guitar players all gave it a try, but it took a Dalhousie mathematician to figure out the exact formula.

Four years ago, inspired by reading news coverage about the song’s 40th anniversary, Jason Brown of Dalhousie’s Department of Mathematics decided to try and see if he could apply a mathematical calculation known as Fourier transform to solve the Beatles’ riddle. The process allowed him to decompose the sound into its original frequencies using computer software and parse out which notes were on the record.

H/T: Newmark’s Door