Sunday, November 14, 2010
POS: Backmasking and Reverse Speech in Music
Backward messaging in music (commonly known as backmasking) has been a controversy ever since the late 1960s, when messages were found backwards on some Beatles' albums, hinting that Paul McCartney had died. Some of these subliminal messages have been identified as purposeful while some are apparently inadvertent. Some believe that many of these backward messages were in fact examples of "Reverse Speech" in music. Speech reversals occur naturally in all forms of speech, sung or spoken. Explore some of the links and sites regarding this subject and offer your opinion on at least 10 specific examples. Do you buy into the theory of Reverse Speech or is it all a bunch of hogwash?
THE THEORY OF REVERSE SPEECH AND SPEECH COMPLEMENTARITY.
(1) Human speech has two distinctive yet complementary functions and modes. The Overt mode is spoken forwards and is primarily under conscious control. The Covert mode is spoken backward and is not under conscious control. The backward mode of speech occurs simultaneously with the forward mode and is a reversal of the forward speech sounds.
(2) These two modes of speech, forward and backward, are dependent upon each other and form an integral part of human communication. One mode cannot be fully understood without the other mode. In the dynamics of interpersonal communication, both modes of speech combined communicate the total psyche of the person, conscious as well as unconscious.
(3) Covert speech develops before overt speech. Children speak backwards before they do forwards. Then, as forward speech commences, the two modes of speech gradually combine into one, forming an overall bi-level communication process.
List of Backmasked/Reverse Speech Songs
Jeff Milner's Site
Reverse Speech Site
Click here to here a well known sample of backmasking from Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven". This audio file will play both forward (original context) and backward (backmasking revealed).