Dr. Georges Urbain, Ph.D., French Chemist, Researcher, Professor, Composer & Musician: Madeline’s Monthly Musical Tips Blog & Radio Show for February 2023

Our blog and Radio Show celebrate the life and work of Dr. Georges Urbain, Ph.D., French Chemist, Professor, Composer, Artist, and Musician.

 Many of the world’s chemists, teachers, researchers, artists, composers, medical doctors, neuroscientists, scientists, mathematicians, writers and others have studied and played musical instruments since they were children. These eminent individuals have integrated music into their thinking process. Also included is a new article on how “Music education benefits youth wellbeing”.

Our article of the month is Mastering the Art of Persuasion is Easier than You Think” by Madeline Frank, Ph.D.

Radio Show Feature Question for February 2023:  How did Classical music play a part of Dr. Georges Urbain’s life as a Ph.D., French Chemist, researcher, Professor of Chemistry, composer, artist, and musician and what musical instrument did he play?



Early Life:

Georges Urbain was born in Paris, France on April 12, 1872. His father was a Professor of Chemistry and was an assistant to Edmond Frémy. He inspired his son, Georges in his future career.

Georges began studying the piano as a child, became a “fine pianist” and composed music. Later he was also a painter and sculptor. 

University Education in France:

Georges attended “the Lycée Charlemagne and Lycée Lavoisier.” Then, at the request of his father, he “entered the École de Physique et de Chimie in Paris.” He “graduated first in his class in 1894 earning his Bachelor of Physics and Chemistry at the Sorbonne while serving as assistant in the mineral laboratory where he came under the influence of Pierre Curie, who introduced him to scientific research and inspired him to make chemical research his life work.”

Leopold May, Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. “The Lessor Known Chemists, Past and Present.)

(Nature, June 25, 1938, Vol.141)

Teaching Positions & Research:

Urbain taught from 1894-1895 at the “Preparator at the School of Physics and Industrial Chemistry” (Préparateur at the École de Physique et Chimie Industrielle) , was an assistant in Charles Friedel’s  organic Chemistry laboratory from 1895-1899, was on the Faculté des Science (P.C.N.) from 1895-1898, and at the École Alsacienne (1897-1899).

In 1899, he completed his Ph.D. thesis into the “Separation of Rare Earth Elements.” (Thesis on Recherches sur la Séparation des Terres Rares .)



“After his Ph.D., Urbain worked as head of the laboratories of the General Company of Electricity in Paris (Compagnie Générale d’Electricité, Paris), until 1904 and then returned to the academy to work at the École de Physique et Chimie and taught a class on analytical chemistry at the Sorbonne. In 1907, Urbain joined the International Commission on Atomic Weights, and in 1908, he became Professor of Mineral Chemistry at the Sorbonne. In 1928, Urbain was named Chair of General Chemistry at the Sorbonne, while simultaneously serving as Director of the Chemistry Service at the Institute of Biologie, Physics, and Chemistry, in Paris.”



“As professor at the Institute he created a mecca for good chemistry students. His lectures were well-delivered and extremely popular.” His students “rose in a body when he entered the room” and “listened with such complete attention that there was not a murmur to be heard in the class of three hundred fifty students.”



Most of Dr. Urbain’s work “focused on the rare earths, isolating and separating elements such as europium and gadolinium, and studying their spectra, their magnetic properties and their atomic masses. He discovered the element lutetium (atomic number 71, symbol Lu). He also studied the efflorescence of saline hydrates.”    (“Efflorescence, spontaneous loss of water by a hydrated salt, which occurs when the aqueous vapor pressure of the hydrate is greater than the partial pressure of the water vapor in the air.”)



War Service Awards & Honors: “For his war service, he was made Chevalier la Legion d’Honneur in 1918 and Commandeur in 1933. In 1921 he was elected to the Académie des Sciences. He was an Honorary Member of the Chemical Society of London and Corresponding Member of the National Academies of Belgium, Spain, and the USSR. He served as president of the French Chemical Society, Société de Chimie, and Société de Minéralogie.” (Leopold May, Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. “The Lessor Known Chemists, Past and Present.)

Musical compositions and books he composed and wrote: A few of his musical compositions were A la veillée, Chanson d”Automne, Sur l’herbe, and Magagnose et Dyonisos. His musical compositions for were for piano and organ, piano and a string quartet which were performed on concerts. “In 1924, he wrote the book Le Tombeau d”Aristoxéne. Essai sur la musique, in which he applied the scientific method to the study of music (25).”  As a sculpture, Dr. Urbain immortalized several of his colleagues. Dr. Urbain also wrote 7 books on Chemistry and many scientific papers.(Leopold May, Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. “The Lessor Known Chemists, Past and Present.)

As a sculpture, Dr. Urbain immortalized several of his colleagues. He also wrote 7 books on Chemistry and many scientific papers.

Dr. Georges Urbain , Ph.D. was a French Chemist, Professor of Chemistry, researcher, composer, sculpture, painter, and lifelong musician. He taught, encouraged, and inspired generations of students to become Chemists. In his research, he discovered the chemical element Lutetium, Lu, (from the Latin word “Lutetia, meaning Paris.”) On November 5, 1938, Georges Urbain died.



Mastering the Art of Persuasion is Easier than You Think by Madeline Frank, Ph.D.

My favorite quote is from Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay cosmetics, “Everyone has an invisible sign hanging from their neck saying, ‘Make me feel important.’ Never forget this message when working with people.”

The greatest leaders and persuaders of all time understand that respect is the key that opens a closed mind. When you treat everyone with respect, whether their job is working a toll gate, waiting tables, janitor, cashier, entrepreneur, politician, President, or CEO. Treat them with respect and courtesy.

Think of someone you met who was truly interested in your opinion, or asked you about yourself…and truly listened (instead of thinking about what they were going to say). It made you feel pretty good.

Here are a few tactics that may help you sharpen your communication and become a master of persuasion:

Concise and clear thinking: 

Bob Berg talks about the “3 P’s of Positive Persuasion”. Take a deep breath- and be polite, patient and persistent.” I would also add tact, which is the successful execution of politeness.

Politeness disarms most people’s biases and begins the relationship building process on a good note. No one was ever upset about doing business with someone who they liked too much due to their politeness.

What would happen if you approached every situation with politeness? Entering a meeting with a sincere smile, wrapped in positive expectation will separate you from 95% of the others this person deals with all day long.

Play the game of unexpected kindness:

A student of mine’s mother was driving her van filled with her children on a busy road when a driver suddenly pulled in front of her, missing her car by inches. Instead of cursing at the driver for nearly causing an accident, she smiled and blew a kiss at the driver. The driver looked back at her with a confused look on her face! (her children smiled as she was telling what happened.”

Her children learned a valuable lesson that day from their Mom.

Bob Burg, “Show patience when he or she is resistant to helping. It may be the way they’re used to doing things, living in the problems (“Can’t be done” or “Not our policy”) instead of the solutions. Or it may just be easier to try and discourage you so they don’t have to work too hard in order to earn their daily bread.”

“You got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em”- The Gambler, Kenny Rogers.

In other words, pick your battles!

Patience means that not everything requires a response. You may be at complete odds with the person you are talking with, and may feel the need to lash out and have your opinion heard…but so do they.

Maturity and patience will melt most communication barriers. It may mean that the other person needs to be heard and validated. They don’t necessarily want a solution; they just want to know that they matter.

Listening to Others:

Dale Carnegie tells the story in his book Lincoln the Unknown about President Lincoln inviting an old friend to the White House to discuss the conflict between north and south. President Lincoln’s friend just listened to both sides of the conflict and then the President decided and thanked his friend for coming to listen. He then made his decision. Both sides knew that their ideas had been heard.

Mike Robbins, speaker and author says, “By listening to others, you show them respect. You let them know that you care about what they’re saying and that you value their perspective.”

Dale Carnegie’s second principle is “Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, “You’re wrong.”

 Drs. Ken Blanchart and Spencer Johnson, authors of The One Minute Manager Knows, “Catch them in the act of doing something right.”

Bob Burg, “Verbally acknowledge it and them. Make sure everyone knows about the recognition.” (The Art of Persuasion, p118, by Bob Burg)

By acknowledging positive behavior, it gets repeated.

It’s about the beginning of building relationships.

Bob Burg’s father, Mike Burg defined “Tact as the language of Strength.”

Burg continues, “This may be the one concept that makes the biggest difference in your ability to persuade others to your way of thinking and attain the results you desire. It is known by several different words: diplomacy, delicacy, sensitivity, savoir-faire, and tact.”


Lincoln said, “Tact is the ability to describe others as they see themselves”.

“This doesn’t usually come naturally. Someone tactful can soothe the feelings of the most difficult people; a tactless person will generally make a bad situation worse.” (Merriam-Webster)

It’s all about building relationships.

The other day, I was picking vegetables and an older man with tattoos all over came to stand beside me and started talking.

I listened!

He shared that he was a retired Military officer with an ill wife. He just needed to talk and share what was on his mind. I just quietly listened for a few minutes. As we concluded the conversation, I could tell that he was more relaxed. We smiled and wished each other a good day.

Forget the Favor. Instead, Ask for Advice”.

Les Giblin “suggests asking someone for “advice” instead of a “favor.”

Imagine that your neighbor works for a company that offers the ideal summer job for high school/college students. Your son would love to secure one of those coveted spots. You correctly feel it would be too presumptuous to simply walk up and ask him to get your kid a job so, instead, you ask him for advice.

Instead, you and your son, Billy, meet with the neighbor and your son asks, “Mr. Smith, if you don’t mind my asking, if you were me and wanted to be considered for a summer job at the McJones Company, how would I go about it?”

Don, “who is now being asked for counsel, not a favor, might just recommend that Billy call his office on Monday and he’ll see what he can do—or maybe he will introduce Billy to the personnel manager via email and open the door by using him as a referral.

The worst thing that could happen is that your son goes through the hiring process and realizes that he is not qualified this year, but he has some action steps to take to be at the top of the line next year.”

Phrasing your request something similar to: “Phyllis, if you were me and were attempting to . . . how would you go about it?” Or “Joe, I’d like to get your opinion on something. What would you do if . . . ?”  will acknowledge the other person’s value and perceived expertise.” It also taps into most people’s desire to help others.

Berg, “Request Instead of Order”

“If you really want to distinguish yourself from the masses, try making requests instead of issuing orders. A person who is used to being ordered to perform, such as a waitperson, staff member, hotel employee, etc., will go absolutely out of his way to serve you if you request his actions. Instead of saying to the waiter, “Bring us some more water,” or “We need water,” say, “When you get a chance, would you please bring us some more water?”

Burg continues, “Some people might think this would only delay getting the water. Actually, the opposite is true. Because you’ve made that person feel respected, you’ll be the first person he’ll want to make happy. Instead of an order, make it a request. Instead of, “Joe, make seven copies of these,” how about, “Joe, would you run seven copies of these for me, please?” Phrase your “order” in the form of a request and you’ll be Winning Without Intimidation both in the short and long-term.”

Bob Burg: “Giblin’s Truth Serum”:

 Les Giblin in his book, How to Have Confidence and Power in Dealing With People, “shows that the best way to help someone to act in a particular way is to let them “live up” to your opinion of them. He provides several wonderful examples of people who were trusted and lived up to the trust placed in them. “

“One story tells of a police officer who was consistently able to get “tough guys” to give him information by saying, “People tell me you have quite a reputation as a tough guy and that you’ve been in lots of trouble but there’s one thing you won’t do… You won’t lie. They say, if you tell me anything at all, it will be the truth—and that’s the reason I’m here.” Wow, talk about giving a person something to live up to!”

Bob Burg, “As with the other methods we’ve been discussing, gear this one to your own unique circumstances, and use it often. Not just to see if it works—it works! —but to practice getting really good at making it work for you in a variety of situations. I couldn’t wait to try this one. My first opportunity was with a person attempting to locate some information for me.”

Burg continues, “I had used her services before and she always did a good job. Not great, but good. She was having some trouble this particular time and I said to the person next to me, “I don’t know if this information can be found or not, but I’ll tell you this—if anyone can find it, she can.”

Give them a compliment they can look up to!

Burg,” You can bet your boots she found it and now she goes out of her way for me whenever I need to stop by.”

By being persistent you are letting “them know in a very kind, polite manner, that you’re not going away, and that it’s in their own best interest to help you.” Sometimes your persistence will be wrapped in charm, but when they know you will not cease until…they will likely be happy to help. (or not, but either way, they will assist you).

What 5 ingredients will help you connect and persuade others?

1)Burg’s 3 P’s of Positive Persuasion: Be Polite, Patient, and Persistent. Tact is a successful execution of politeness!

 2)   No matter what, “treat everyone with respect” and kindness!. When others need a smile, share yours.     (Also say good morning …..)

 3) “Ask for advice”, “ask for help,” or “ask for their opinion.”

 4)  Listen to others.

 5) Request instead of order.” “When you get a chance would you ……….?”

  By following these 5 ingredients for connecting and persuading others you will build happier relationships. (2023) Madeline Frank

If you need a speaker or virtual speaker contact Madeline at: [email protected]


 “Music Education Benefits Youth Wellbeing” (January 18, 2023) by Nina Raffio from Science Daily. University of Southern California. “A new study demonstrates the benefits of music education to adolescent health and wellbeing.”

Beatriz Ilari, Eun Cho. Musical participation and positive youth development in middle schoolFrontiers in Psychology, 2023; 13



The Secret of Teaching Science & Math Through Music” by Madeline Frank, Ph.D. is available in book form, and newly updated as an e-book on Kindle, Nook, or iBook:


 “Musical Notes On Math” by Dr. Madeline Frank teaches your child fractions and decimals, the fun easy way, through the rhythm of music, Winner of the Parent To Parent Adding Wisdom Award is available in book form, newly updated as an e-book on Kindle, Nook, or iBook.:


Dr. Madeline Frank’s book “Leadership on a Shoestring Budget” is available through amazon. To order your copy as an e-book on Kindle click on the following link:



 “Madeline’s Midnight Melodies- Music From around the World”. This CD complements her books with a blend of dance music, gigues, tangos, ballet and favorites including “Danny Boy”, Puccini’s “O Mio Babbino Caro”, Debussy’s “Claire De Lune” and others. “Madeline’s Midnight Melodies” CD is now available for purchase by downloading a song, downloading the album click below:

Amazon | iTunes


Wishing you and your family a happy Valentine’s Day from Your Non-Invasive Medicine Music Expert, Madeline

For over 30 years, Dr. Madeline Frank has helped children and adults overcome problems through Classical music. Madeline Frank, Ph.D., DTM is an award-winning teacher, an amazon.com best-selling author, researcher, speaker, conductor, and concert artist. She has discovered a scientific link between studying a musical instrument and academic and societal success. Madeline Frank earned her Bachelor and Master’s degree from the Juilliard School of Music. Her education has included scholarships at the Juilliard School, Indiana University, and the University of Cincinnati and she has a violin performance diploma from the North Carolina School of the Arts. (C) 2023 Madeline Frank.