Cows are sedentary creatures. They like to eat grass, stand still and occasionally moo. And they don’t like to rock. However, they do seem to enjoy calming pop ballads.
That’s what a pair of scientists at Leicester University determined after playing a variety of songs to more than 1,000 Holstein-Friesians. Dr. Adrian North and researcher Liam MacKenzie found that the cattle that heard slower music produced 3 percent more milk than average cows did.
R.E.M.’s “Everybody Hurts,” Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day,” Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and Aretha Franklin’s version of “What a Diff’rence a Day Makes” were among the songs most enjoyed by the bovine crowd.
However, faster songs seemed to trouble the animals, slightly reducing their milk yield. Sadly, the Wonder Stuff’s “Size of a Cow” was one of those tracks. Others included Supergrass’ “Pumping on Your Stereo” and Jamiroquai’s “Space Cowboy.”
Researchers played music 12 hours a day for cows in the nine-week study. It’s unclear whether record retailers will try to milk the findings, and there’s no word on whether playing Limp Bizkit for livestock increases the frequency of mad cow disease.