Pharrell Talks Synesthesia with Psychology Today

One of the secret’s to Pharrell’s success is synesthesia, a medical condition which for him translates auditory information into visual phenomena. Yes — Pharrell can “see sounds.” He sat down with Psychology Today to discuss the sensation and describe his musical pedagogy:

Pharrell Williams next takes me on a journey involving harmonics. “Another thing I think has a correlation (to synesthesia) is this,” he says. ” There are seven basic colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. And those also correspond with musical notes…White, believe it or not, which gives you an octave is the blending of all the colors…” There’s such conviction and sense of discovery in his voice.

Mr. Williams also ascribes to a chakra system and feels affinity for color associations in many mediums. “Colors are light in the electromagnetic spectrum. For every color, there is a sound, a vibration, a part of the human body, a number, a musical note…You have all of your chakras, you have the pituitary, the pineal, the thymus thyroid, the adrenal and the gonad and so on (which correspond to colors).”

And he has a unique process to access the music, which is always accompanied by a vision of colors floating by. He says his process is like riding a moped – you have to peddle first to fire it up. “What gives me meditation is the shower. When I get in the shower, because of something called sensory deprivation – when one of your senses is being blocked, it allows your mind to wander and be imaginative. So when I’m in the shower, the water blocks out the sound, so it makes me imagine things.

“And that happens to me on planes, and that happens to me in the shower, and that happens to me underwater. And that’s why when I’m around water it’s a little bit more of a creative environment.

To read the full article, click here.

  • B M Wms

    It’s called being in tune with God. Everyone has something. Autistic and Asperger’s folks rock also and we need to stop labeling people and “cornerizing” them! We happen to have a President whose “difference” was hidden from him…..so he is out if control.

  • B M Wms

    Thank you PW….the Happy song is such an unbelievable lift and I’m 61 and tired of this planet. The Happy song tells me to hold on a little while longer. And agreed, God gave us the Earth and we destroyed it, why go mess up the other eight! American Humans….the epitome of disrespectful beings…..the Native American was on the correct God path. While I’m not a Trumpet…….a troubled human is being roasted daily……does no one in the Republican party care enough to say………resign before you are emotionally destroyed….. I feel the pain on his wife’s face……😔😔😔😔😔he never wanted to win.

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