For info this is it https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesthesia I'm not a synesthete that's why I ask the synesthetes who really are and who really hear music in color

You see what? Shapes take shape in the field of vision? Yes but, is that useful for the absolute ear, kind depending on the drawing you see, can you tell if it is a F or a F# for example?

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    A friend of mine says he sees colour according to note, chord type, with hints as to the 'flavour' Maj, min,7th etc. He also says that as he approaches 60 his perfect pitch is slipping, so now things seem to be in the wrong colour :\ – Tetsujin Jun 11 at 13:03
  • I'd be inclined to guess it's the other way around, that perfect pitch is requisite for being able to consistently assign colors to pitches. (Non-music-related synesthete speaking, very jealous of people who can do that). – the-baby-is-you Jun 12 at 7:44

I've had in-depth conversations with maybe 15 people with absolute pitch over the years, and in almost all the cases, synesthesia did not play a significant role. In a couple of cases there was some suggestion of it, but nothing major.

So I would say that "color hearing" is a useful metaphor for explaining how some people distinguish notes without reference, but it should not be taken literally.

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  • …but it can be literal, see my comment above. – Tetsujin Jun 11 at 15:12
  • This doesn't address the question. And there most certainly are people with color, and object, synesthesia relative to sound. – Carl Witthoft Jun 11 at 15:13
  • I know 3 close friends who very definitely have perfect pitch. Only one of them has synesthesia. One doesn't necessarily involve the other. – Tetsujin Jun 11 at 15:15
  • @Tetsujin, the comment above talks about colors or flavors related to "chord type", "Maj", "min", "7th" - i.e. relative pitch, not absolute pitch. And yes, of course, different chords and intervals have different "colors" or "flavors", in fact I'd say that everyone can feel that. But with regard to the actual OP question, i.e. literally seeing colors as the method for having absolute pitch, while I wouldn't rule it out entirely, and while it might be possible in some rare cases, my own direct and indirect experience suggests that usually it just doesn't work like that. – MMazzon Jun 11 at 15:53
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    Re-read my comment. I have one friend who absolutely and literally sees pitch as colour, which is why he's now confused [& rather annoyed] by notes having the wrong colour as he gets older. He's tried describing it, but it's just like trying to explain a rainbow to a blind man. I cannot see what he does. – Tetsujin Jun 11 at 15:57

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