Music & Memory

Music memory video and other news

Hello dear reader,

Thames pathApologies for my absence over the last few weeks. Life has been rather hectic so far this year and after my TED talk I took a little time to rest my addled mind. One Saturday a couple of weeks ago I walked for about 6 hours along the Thames path with my partner, stopping off at the occasional pub when the shower clouds floated overhead. What a lovely day and a keen reminder that it is a good thing to rest the mind completely once in a while.

Speaking of my TED talk, the edit is now on YouTube so you are free to have a watch if you like. My talk is about the power of musical memory and is told through three tales; the star, the survivor and the miscreant!

Vicky at TEDMEDVicky’s Music and Memory TEDMED talk 2013

If you enjoy it then I would love it if you could pass it on. I can’t bear to watch it myself but friends of mine have said it has been useful material for lectures on memory. It is great to think that after all the stress leading up to that day, the final output may prove helpful for students. I hope you like it.

I also want to make a promise that I will return to normal blogging in just a few more weeks. I am currently completing my first book, a pop science journey through the wonderful world of music psychology. I have been writing the book for a year now (good bye weekends!) and it is nearly complete. You, dear reader, will be the first to know when it is released, should be in early 2014.

Lucerne – beautiful!

In other news, I will be moving in September of this year. This is another reason why my life since the end of last year has been a little hectic! I have been offered a really unique opportunity to work for 10 months in a music performance research centre in Lucerne, Switzerland. The fantastic group at the Hochshule Luzern will be making room for me in their world and I can’t wait to start exploring some new areas of research (and returning to some old loves – musical memory, here I come!!)

After I leave Lucerne I will be moving to the fantastic Music, Mind and Machine group at the University of Sheffield. 

Although I can’t leave you with any detailed breakdown of the latest research today I thought I would give you some nice links to some really interesting new studies. As usual I try to post only “Open Access” materials so there are no barriers to learning. Happy browsing.

Music training, cognition, and personality by Corrigall KA, Schellenberg EG, Misura NM – We asked whether individual differences in cognition and personality predict who takes music lessons and for how long.

Repetition and emotive communication in music versus speech by Elizabeth Hellmuth Margulis – If repetition is fundamental to emotional responses to music, and repetition is a key distinguisher between the domains of music and speech, then close examination of the phenomenon of repetition might help clarify the ways that music elicits emotion differently than speech.

Sad Music Induces Pleasant Emotion by Al Kawakami, Kiyoshi Furukawa, Kentaro Katahira and Kazuo Okanoya – Results revealed that the sad music was perceived to be tragic, whereas the actual experiences of the participants listening to the sad music induced them to feel more romantic, more blithe, and less tragic emotions than they actually perceived with respect to the same music. 

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