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PSYB51 chapter 11 notes.docx

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Maydianne Andrade

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Music and Speech Perception - sounds from musical instruments and human vocal tracts obey the same laws of physical acoustics as all other sounds Music - Pythagoras who invented the Pythagorean theorem, took his those numbers from music scales - thought that the musical intervals they found most pleasing should provide the greatest insights to mathematics and the universe as a whole - when listeners hear pleasant sounding chords preceding a word, they are faster to respond that a word such as “charm” is positive - they are slower to respond that a word such as “evil” is negative - high levels of neurotransmitter serotonin ( which is targeted by many antidepressant drugs) are responsible for negative aspects of emotion and mood - when people must listen to disagreeable music, their levels of serotonin rise - when people listen to highly pleasurable music, they experience changes in heart rate, muscle electrical activity and respiration and blood flow increases in brain regions that are thought to be involved in reward and motivation Musical Notes -pitch: the psychological aspect of sound related mainly to the fundamental frequency Tone Height and Tone Chroma - musical pitch is one of the characteristics of musical notes, the sounds that comprise melodies - octave: the interval between two sound frequencies having a ratio of 2:1 - when one of two periodic sounds is double the frequency of the other, those two sound are one octave apart - in typical western music, the frequencies of notes are adjusted slightly from simple ratios so that combinations of notes will sound equally good when played in higher or lower frequency ranges ( keys) - the set of notes ( scale) used commonly in Western music is called “equal temperament” - musical pitch is typically described as having two dimensions 1. Tone height: a sound quality corresponding to the level of pitch. It is monotonically related to frequency 2. Tone chroma: a combination of three or more musical notes with different pitches played at the same time - chroma= greek word for color - you can visualize musical pitch as a helix: the circular laps around the helix correspond to the changes in tone chroma. At the same point along each lap around the helix, a sound lies on a vertical line, and all sounds along that line share the same tone chroma and are separated by octaves Chords - Music is further defined by richer complex sounds called chords - chord: a combination of three or more musical notes with different pitches played at the same time - the simultaneous playing of two notes is called a “dyad” - the major distinction between chords is whether they are consonant or dissonant - consonant chords: thought to be more pleasing - combinations of notes in which the ratios between the note frequencies are simple - dissonant intervals: less elegant ratios - the middle ages said the augmented fourth chord was called the “devil in music” Cultural Differences - different musical traditions use different numbers of notes and spaces between notes within an octave - infants seem to be equipped to learn whatever scale is used in their environment Making Music - notes or chords can form a melody - melody: an arrangement of notes or chords in succession - a melody is defined by its contour, which is the pattern of rises and declines in pitch-rather than by an exact sequence of sound frequencies - even within a single octave, the same melody will be heard from different notes if the steps between notes stay the same - all perception is particularly sensitive to change - notes and chords vary in duration - tempo: the perceived speed of the presentation of sounds - any melody can be played at slow or fast tempo - but the relative durations within a sequence are played with different durations, we will hear a completely different melody Rhythm - music varies in rhythm - Bolton’s studies: listeners are predisposed to group sounds into rhythmic patterns - several qualities contribute to whether sounds will be heard as accented ( stressed) or unaccented ( unstressed) - sounds that are longer, louder, and higher in pitch all are more likely to be heard as leading their group - rhythm seems to be largely in part, psychological Melody Development - melody is also essentially a psychological entity - it is our experience with a particular sequence of notes or with similar sequences that helps us perceive coherence - studies of 8 month old listeners reveal that learning of melodies begins quite early in life - since infants responded differently to the new melodies, we can deduce that they had learned something about the original melodies - in a study of 7 month olds, parents played a recording of two Mozart sonata movements to their everyday for 2 weeks - after two weeks had passed, the infants were tested in a lab to see whether they remembered the movements - infant listeners responded differently to the original movements than to similar Mozart movements introduced to them for the first time in the lab Speech - most people who listen to speech also produce speech -the realtionship between production and perception of speech is an intimate one - humans are capable of producing an incredible range of distinct speech sounds ( the 5000 languages around the world, use over 850 different speech sounds) - vocal tract: the airway above the larynx used for the production of speech. The vocal tract includes the oral tract and nasal tract -one notorious disadvantage of such a low larynx is that humans are more susceptible to chocking than any other animal -another disadvantage is that beyond infancy, we cannot swallow and breathe at the same time Speech Production - the production of speech has three basic components: - respiration ( lungs) - phonation ( vocal chords) - articulation ( vocal tract) - Speaking fluently requires an impressive degree of coordination among these components Respiration and Phonation - to initiate a speech sound, the diaphragm pushes ait out of the lungs, through the trachea and up the larynx - at the larynx air must pass through the two vocal folds, which are made up of muscle tissue that can be adjusted to vary how freely air passes through the opening between them - these adjustments are known as types of phonation - the rate at which vocal folds vibrate depends on their stiffness and mass - children have small vocal folds have pitched voices - adult men generally have lower pitched voices than women have because one of the effects of testosterone during puberty is to increase the mass of the vocal folds - by varying the tension of vocal folds ( stiffness) and the pressure of airflow from the lungs, individual talkers can vary the fundamental frequency of voiced sounds - vibration of the vocal folds creates a harmonic spectrum - the first harmonic corresponds to the actual rate of physical vibration of the vocal folds, the fundamental frequency Articulation - the area above larynx, the oral tract and nasal tract combined - is referred to the vocal tract - articulation: the act or manner of producing a speech sound using the vocal tract - changing the size and shape of the space through which sound passes increases and decreases energy at different frequencies -these effects are called resonance characteristics - the spec
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