Memory for musical intervals: Cognitive differences for consonance and dissonance

  • Susan E. Rogers Dept. of Psychology, McGill University, 1205 Dr. Penfield Avenue, Montréal, Qué. H3A 1B1, Canada
  • Daniel J. Levitin Dept. of Psychology, McGill University, 1205 Dr. Penfield Avenue, Montréal, Qué. H3A 1B1, Canada
Keywords: Bandwidth, Mathematical models, Storage allocation (computer), Musical context, Short-term memory (STM), Small-integer ratio dyads

Abstract

A short-term memory (STM) paradigm has been used to examine the influence of frequency separation versus frequency ratio on the processing of pure-tone dyads presented outside of a musical (tonal) context. The physical interaction produces a sensation termed beating when the frequency separation between a dyad's two tones is less than a single critical bandwidth. Models of sensory consonance/dissonance (C/D) predicted that all pure-tone dyads with frequency differences greater than a critical bandwidth should be considered to be constant. The representation of musical C/D typically reflects an integration of the sensory properties of a complex-tone signal, the musical context, and the listener's exposure to intervals. Nonmusicians displayed more accurate memory for large-integer compared with small-integer ratio dyads.
Published
2007-09-01
How to Cite
1.
Rogers SE, Levitin DJ. Memory for musical intervals: Cognitive differences for consonance and dissonance. Canadian Acoustics [Internet]. 2007Sep.1 [cited 2019Aug.19];35(3):56-7. Available from: https://jcaa.caa-aca.ca/index.php/jcaa/article/view/1898
Section
Proceedings of the Acoustics Week in Canada