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Trying to make contact

Trying to make contact
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Since the dawn of time, mankind has been curious about life on other planets. In our quest to find other lifeforms, we’ve sent an array of probes, waves, signals and spacecraft into the unknown. Along with these efforts, we’ve also sent audio recordings and songs into deep space, with the hope that aliens will find them and send back mix-tapes of their own.

National Hearing Care have compiled a playlist of songs, all of which have been sent up into space. They vary from classical pieces to Chuck Berry’s “Johnny B Goode”, the cadence of human languages and more. The first ten tracks were launched into space aboard the Voyager space probes in 1977 and are songs that space agencies believe best represent humanity. Find out everything you need to know about space probes here.

Greetings from the Secretary-General of the UN Kurt Waldheim

Greetings from the Secretary-General of the UN Kurt Waldheim
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Our first track reveals the harmonies of human speech, a greeting from the then Secretary-General of the United Nations, Kurt Waldheim. Waldheim expresses humanity’s desire for peaceful contact with other beings.

"Greetings in 55" by Bavil

"Greetings in 55" by Bavil
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“Greetings in 55 languages” features multiple staff from the foreign language departments of Cornell University in New York. A greeting of “Hello” was recorded in multiple languages such as Ancient Greek, Latin, Swedish and Polish. A record of 55 greetings was created, with the intention of sending it out to space and introducing ourselves to potential extraterrestrials.

"The Sounds of Earth" by Tierro

"The Sounds of Earth" by Tierro
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Natural and manufactured sounds share airtime here, and include the twitter of birdsong, the howling of wind, and noises from transport and machinery. “The Sounds of Earth” introduces our most common sounds and noises here on Earth, which may be new to those living among the stars.

"Brandenburg Concerto No.2" by Bach

"Brandenburg Concerto No.2" by Bach
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Bach’s “Brandenburg Concerto No 2” is the fourth track on our list. One of Bach’s most celebrated pieces, it contains recordings of solo flute, oboe, trumpet, violin and other instruments.

"Tchenhoukoumen Percussion" by Senegal

"Tchenhoukoumen Percussion" by Senegal
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The hypnotic percussion from the African country of Senegal are featured on this track. Its rhythmic beat makes you want to get up and dance or tap your hands on the table.

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"Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry

"Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry
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“Johnny B Goode” is certainly a modern classic and a great choice to send out to space. Actor Steve Martin, hosting an episode of the television show Saturday Night Live in 1978, joked that aliens had intercepted the Voyager probes and replied to Earth, saying ‘Send more Chuck Berry’.

"Partita for Violin Solo No.3" by Bach

"Partita for Violin Solo No.3" by Bach
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“Gavotte en Rondeau Partita Nº 3 in E major”, by classical composer Johann Sebastian Bach, is an elegant musical piece. A ‘partita’ means a piece of music for one instrument, in this case, the violin. This song was sent to space within the 1977 Voyager spacecraft.

" Die Zauberflöte" by Mozart

" Die Zauberflöte" by Mozart
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This extract from Mozart’s famous opera, The Golden Flute, is sung by Edda Moser, a German soprano. Titled “Queen of the Night”, the song is a threat. The queen demands her daughter kill the queen’s husband or be disowned.

"Symphony No.5" by Beethoven

 "Symphony No.5" by Beethoven
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This is one of Beethoven’s most rousing and best-known symphonies. Around the age of 26 Beethoven began experiencing ringing in his ears, now known as tinnitus. His hearing became progressively worse, until the age of 44 when he was completely deaf. Luckily for us, this didn’t stint his creative capabilities as Beethoven continued to use his imagination and memory to conduct.

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