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Audition and Music Lecture - In Class - Psych 1XX3

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Joe Kim

Audition and Music Sound Sensations  Similarities to Vision o External organ on outside of head o Take in sensation from environment and code into impulses  Sound Waves o Longitudinal Wave Form – compressions (high density) and rarefactions (low density)  Difference in air particle densities o Can travel great distance  Air particles are not travelling very far – just moving back and forth, but influencing adjacent particles o Point source model – start at a source, moves outward in 3D space  (not straight line)  Frequency o Inverse of wavelength o Interpreted as pitch  High Pitch – higher frequency (shorter wavelength)  Low Pitch – low frequency (longer wavelength) o Pure tones – sounds that have one pitch o Harmonics – integer multiples of fundamental frequency  By the time they get analyzed by auditory cortex – only hear one note  Can remove energy of 200 Hz (for eg/) – still hear exact same pitch  Distance between different harmonics is measured…  Eg/ When you’re speaking on the phone, only some pitches are being conveyed  Amplitude o Measure of loudness  Timbre o How complex or pure o Combination of harmonics; complex o Able to discriminate between one sound source from another  Eg/ piano from trumpet, even though playing the same note  Different instruments emphasize different harmonics Ear Structure  Human Ear o Quieter we can hear, the better we can hear a predator approaching o Threshold of hearing – smallest we can hear is about a mosquito about 2 m from out head o Small volumes – moves eardrum minimally - must amplify sound – use lever system o Ossicles – 3 small bones in ear 1. Hammer 2. Anvil 3. Stirrup o Cochlea – fluid filled  Need amplification to have sound waves travel through liquid medium o Defects – in ossicles fused together – cannot amplify small scale signals  Hearing Your Own Voice o Tiny muscles connect to bones; reflex system whereby an incoming loud sound causes muscles to constrict and prevent bones from moving – prevents amplification of an already loud sound o Secondary method of sound transmission  Sound waves are naturally conducted along our bones – bone transmission  Sounds different than sound waves travelling through the air to our ears  Bone conduction tends to overestimate frequencies – hear lower frequencies Music  Musician Abilities o Most advanced training for the auditory system o Musicians show advantages over non-musicians in auditory tasks o Tap along to a metronome o Musicians are better at describing intervals between notes, chord structures, can tell when two notes are minutely different o Mental rotation, mental manipulation in space  Noise Induced Hearing Loss o The more noise you hear today, the less noise you’ll hear tomorrow o Hair cells cannot be regenerated  Why Evolve Music? o Music is culturally universal o May have a reproductive advantage o Social cohesion  Playing music likely evolved from a group activity  Eg/ drum circles  Making music as a group is a pro-social event, makes you feel good about those people, did something cooperatively – may be more willing to share resources
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