The ongoing pandemic that has forced many to quarantine in their homes has made the use of technology one of the most popular means of connecting with others. We’re seeing more amazing projects coming out from artists and musicians who have used the time they have on their hands and the resources of the internet and video/audio technology to connect from all over the world. Throw an interesting cat into the mix and you have the makings of a whimsical project. We recently learned about how an angry cat served as the inspiration for an international circle of musicians to get together and join in a tribute to his contributions to our entertainment.
The story was shared by KSL.com. South African resident David Scott is a talented musician who has an angry cat with a meow that had some indisputable musical tones. He found a way to incorporate the sounds that the cat was making with his music. When other musicians from around the world found out about his endeavor they were happy to get in on the fun. A total of six musicians from all over the world lent their musical expertise to the one-man-band (and one cat), to create the group that is now known as The Kiffness.
An international musical collaboration
It all started with a cat that had an attitude. His angry meows inspired his owner to put the feline’s voice to music. Soon Scott was joined by Amanda Barbalho, a violinist from Brazil, Krystov Hon, a ukelele player from the Czech Republic a drummer from Germany, along with Ukrainian an American, and Russian artists. The video went viral with the cat and his backup band of six musicians from different countries around the world. By June 4, 2021, the video amassed 15,000 views which multiplied exponentially to half a million by June 7th.
What is it about cats that inspire music?
Scott’s cat isn’t the only feline that has served as an inspiration for composers and musicians. Did you know that some of the most famous composers through history were inspired by their feline friends to compose musical pieces? According to Lumasuite, at least five other composers were known to be influenced to write famous musical pieces because of their cats. Here are a few more cat-inspired songs that confirm how influential cats have been historically in music. Pulcinella was a cat owned by Domenico Scarlatti, a baroque composer from Naples who moved to Spain. He composed harpsichord sonatas and was inspired when his cat Pulcinella walked across the keys. The first six notes the cat struck were used to create “The Cats’ Fugue,” also known as “The Fugue in G Minor.”
Antonio Sacchini was an Italian opera composer from the 18th century who was also inspired by his cats. He was an avid lover of felines who composed with a roomful of cats that he claimed created the right environment to compose his famous operas. It has been noted that he was consistently surrounded by his beloved pets because they inspired his creativity. Maurice Ravel was a composer responsible for the creation of the opera titled “L’enfant et les sortileges.” The 1925 opera was a tribute to talking animals and inanimate objects that would come to life to speak to a disrespectful child. The opera was inspired by his love of Siamese cats. He was reputed for going out into the streets and picking up strays to bring them to his home. He claimed that he could communicate with felines and speak their language as well as understand what they were saying back to him. This resulted in the brilliant opera that made its premiere in 1925.
Frederic Chopin was influenced by his cat named Valdeck. He was inspired to compose the waltz in F Major Op 34, no. 3, also known as “The Waltz of the Cat.”
Composer Claude Debussy was known for his great love of cats. Although the names of his cats remain unknown, he earned a reputation for having a fondness for Angora cats. The story goes that Debussy loved his cats so much that he let them walk all over his desk and across his musical scores because they helped him to focus when creating his music. When a cat he owned would die, he would get another and give it the same name.
Music for cats
Music has been written specifically for cats. According to The Humane Society, music is a type of communication that reaches out to us all, both humans and cats. What some people may find appealing may be irritating for cats, however. We can communicate with our pets through music, but it’s important to understand what tones resonate with cats and calm them. A collaboration between cellist David Teie and expert on primate and human communication and cognition, Charles Snowden deled into the types of music and their effects on various species. It was discovered that pure tones with regular rhythms and harmonies, and the total avoidance of irregular beats and dissonance have a calming effect on animals with cats included. Pet owners use music that is composed specifically for cats to help calm and soothe them when they are agitated.
Cats are wonderful creatures who inspire the music of the world. It’s nothing new as it has been going on for centuries. The angry cat’s meows inspired his owner and a host of musicians from around the world to join together and create their own septet. Music is a universal language that serves as a form of communication, but its effects differ from one species to another. There seems to be a magical connection between humans, cats, and music in general. Felines inspire us to compose tunes that are suitable for both species. It’s an important connection that brings people from all over the world together.