2023 Season 8 New Release: Tonight my special guest is a researcher in reverse speech David Oates who's here to discuss how the phenomena proves Apollo really made it to the moon.
Reverse speech is a pseudoscientific topic first advocated by David John Oates which gained publicity when it was mentioned on Art Bell's nightly Coast to Coast AM radio talk show. It is based upon the theory that during spoken language production, human speakers subconsciously produce hidden messages that give insights into their innermost thoughts. Oates claims that it therefore has applications in psychotherapy, criminology and business negotiation. The theory has been rejected by mainstream science and academia.
Oates' claim is that, on average, once in every 15–20 seconds of casual conversation a person produces two related sentences—a "forward-spoken" message that is heard consciously, and a "backwards" message unconsciously embedded in the person's speech. These two modes of speech, forward and backward, are supposedly dependent upon each other and form an integral part of human communication. In the dynamics of interpersonal communication, both modes of speech combine to communicate the total psyche of the person, conscious as well as unconscious. Oates claims that backward speech is always honest and reveals the truth about the speaker's intentions and motivations. The most famous recording that allegedly demonstrates this is the speech given by Neil Armstrong at the time of the first human lunar landing on 20 July 1969. If played backwards, the words "small step for man" sound somewhat like "Man will spacewalk."
The backwards playing of records was advised as training for magicians by occultist Aleister Crowley, who suggested in his 1913 book Magick (Book 4)that an adept "train himself to think backwards by external means", one of which was to "listen to phonograph records, reversed". In the movie Gold Diggers of 1935, the end of the dancing-pianos musical number, "The Words Are in My Heart," is filmed in reverse motion, with the accompanying instrumental score incidentally being reversed.
In 1959, a vocal group called The Eligibles released a record called "Car Trouble", which contains two nonsense passages. When reversed, they reveal the phrases "And you can get my daughter back by 10:30, you bum!" and (perhaps inevitably) "Now, lookit here, cats, stop running these records backwards!". Peaking at #107 on the Billboard magazine charts that summer, "Car Trouble" is believed to be the first hit record to contain backmasking.
The Beatles, who incorporated the techniques of concrète into their recordings, were responsible for popularizing the concept of backmasking. Singer John Lennon and producer George Martin both claimed they discovered the backward recording technique during the recording of 1966's Revolver; specifically the album tracks "Tomorrow Never Knows" and "I'm Only Sleeping", and the single "Rain". Lennon stated that, while under the influence of marijuana, he accidentally played the tapes for "Rain" in reverse and enjoyed the sound. The following day he shared the results with the other Beatles, and the effect was used first in the guitar solo for "Tomorrow Never Knows" and later in the coda of "Rain". According to Martin, the band had been experimenting with changing the speeds of and reversing the "Tomorrow Never Knows" tapes, and Martin got the idea of reversing Lennon's vocals and guitar, which he did with a clip from "Rain". Lennon then liked the effect and kept it. Regardless, "Rain" was the first Beatles song to feature a backmasked message: "Sunshine ... Rain ... When the rain comes, they run and hide their heads" (listen; the last line is the reversed first verse of the song).
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