A study covered by PolicyMic relating to a Stanford exploration on the therapeutic effects of rhythmic music concluded there are several correlations between being a damn good drummer and intelligence, critical thinking, and problem-solving.
This study done by the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden proved that point:
Researchers had drummers play a variety of different beats and then tasked them with a simple 60-problem intelligence test. The drummers who scored the highest were also better able to keep a steady beat. Apparently figuring out how to play in time is just another form of problem-solving.
But playing in time isn’t something that just anyone can do. Even the most elite thinkers over at Harvard agree to that—they came to the conclusion that drummers rely on their own, internal clock that mimics the pattern of waves.
Basically, time for these guys is not, in fact, a flat circle.
But now back to that Stanford study. The Bay Area University realized that not only are more intelligent drummers better able to keep a beat, they can also pass on the intelligence to those around them. Just hearing a solid, steady rhythm improves thinking capacity for a lot of people. But it’s not just Stanford thinking that—University of Washington and University of Texas had relative findings as well.
But can a drummer improve others’ cognitive abilities too? According to Oxford University (cited in the PolicyMic article), that’s a hell yes. The smarter and thus more rhythmically superior drummers create a “drummer’s high” for those around them, leading the entire band to play more cohesively.