Dave Brubeck apparently said "The folk origins of music aren’t far apart anywhere in the world.”
According to Virginia Huighes
"According to a study out yesterday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, our cognitive connection to music may have evolved from an older skill, the ability to glean emotion from motion. People will choose the same combination of spatiotemporal features — a certain speed, rhythm, and smoothness — whether pairing a particular emotion with a melody or with a cartoon animation, the study found. But most surprising, the results held true in people from two starkly different cultures: a rural village in Cambodia and a college campus in New England."
via Ed Yong who has links to several other posts including some lists of the best of the year.