Guitarists in tune as brain waves get in musical groove.
As pairs of guitarists played the same jazz melody in time with each other, their brain waves became more synchronised, scientists found.
The study sheds light on how people's brains interact when they perform the same actions.
Jazz and blues musicians often talk about getting "into the groove", the magic moment when members of a band start working together almost as if by telepathy.
The new findings trace the phenomenon to what is happening inside the performers' heads.
Scientists in Germany carried out electroencephalography (EEG) recordings of the electrical activity in the brains of eight pairs of professional guitarists.
Each pair was asked to play a short jazz-fusion piece, composed by Alexander Buck, up to 60 times together.
After a few metronome beats, the "lead" guitarist signalled the start of the performance by tapping the right finger on the guitar fret board. EEG electrodes attached to the guitarists' scalps picked up their brain wave patterns. Similarities between the brain waves of the paired musicians were seen to increase significantly, first during the metronome introduction, and secondly as the playing began.
The frontal and central regions of the brain showed the strongest synchronisation patterns.
Guitarists' brains interact as they perform