The Psychology of Music

The Psychology of Music, 3rd Edition

The Psychology of Music, 3rd Edition,Diana Deutsch,ISBN9780123814609

D Deutsch   

Academic Press




229 X 152

A timely update to the reference that explains musical phenomena in terms of mental functions, defining the ways in which one perceives, remembers, creates, and performs music.

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Key Features

  • Encompasses the way the brain perceives, remembers, creates, and performs music
  • Contributions from the top international researchers in perception and cognition of music
  • Designed for use as a textbook for advanced courses in psychology of music


The Psychology of Music serves as an introduction to an interdisciplinary field in psychology, which focuses on the interpretation of music through mental function. This interpretation leads to the characterization of music through perceiving, remembering, creating, performing, and responding to music. In particular, the book provides an overview of the perception of musical tones by discussing different sound characteristics, like loudness, pitch and timbre, together with interaction between these attributes. It also discusses the effect of computer resources on the psychological study of music through computational modeling. In this way, models of pitch perception, grouping and voice separation, and harmonic analysis were developed. The book further discusses musical development in social and emotional contexts, and it presents ways that music training can enhance the singing ability of an individual. The book can be used as a reference source for perceptual and cognitive psychologists, neuroscientists, and musicians. It can also serve as a textbook for advanced courses in the psychological study of music.


Musicians; psychologists; students interested in and studying the psychology of music.

Diana Deutsch

Affiliations and Expertise

University of California, San Diego, U.S.A.

The Psychology of Music, 3rd Edition

List of Contributors


1 The Perception of Musical Tones

    I. Introduction

    II. Perception of Single Tones

    III. Perception of Sound Combinations

    IV. Conclusions and Outlook



2 Musical Timbre Perception

    I. Psychophysics of Timbre

    II. Timbre as a Vehicle for Source Identity

    III. Timbre as a Structuring Force in Music Perception

    IV. Concluding Remarks



3 Perception of Singing

    I. Introduction

    II. Voice Function

    III. Phonation

    IV. Resonance

    V. Intensity and Masking

    VI. Aspects of Voice Timbre

    VII. Vibrato

    VIII. Intonation in Practice

    IX. Expression

    X. Concluding Remarks


4 Intervals and Scales

    I. Introduction

    II. Pitch Intervals

    III. Scales and Tuning Systems

    IV. Overview



5 Absolute Pitch

    I. Introduction

    II. Implicit AP

    III. Genesis of AP

    IV. AP and Speech Processing

    V. AP and Pitch Processing

    VI. Neuroanatomical Substrates of AP

    VII. AP Accuracy and Stimulus Characteristics

    VIII. Pitch Shifts in AP Possessors

    IX. AP in Special Populations

    X. Conclusion



6 Grouping Mechanisms in Music

    I. Introduction

    II. Fusion and Separation of Spectral Components

    III. Larger-Scale Groupings

    IV. Auditory Streaming and Implied Polyphony

    V. Grouping and Phrase Structure

    VI. Grouping of Simultaneous Tone Sequences

    VII. Grouping of Equal-Interval Tone Complexes

    VIII. Relationships to Music Theory and Practice



7 The Processing of Pitch Combinations

    I. Introduction

    II. Feature Abstraction

    III. Abstraction of Higher-Order Shapes

    IV. The Organization of Short-Term Memory for Tones

    V. Paradoxes Based on Pitch Class

    VI. Illusory Transformation from Speech to Song

    VII. Conclusion



8 Computational Models of Music Cognition

    I. Introduction

    II. Models of Key-Finding

    III. Models of Meter-Finding

    IV. Other Aspects of Perception

    V. Models of Musical Experience

    VI. Models of Performance

    VII. Models of Composition

    VIII. Conclusions



9 Structure and Interpretation of Rhythm in Music

    I. Introduction

    II. Overview: Decomposing the Rhythmic Signal

    III. Structure and Interpretation: Visualizing Rhythm Space

    IV. Rhythmic Pattern: Representation

    V. Rhythmic Pattern and Timing: Categorization

    VI. Metrical Structure

    VII. Tempo and Timing: Perceptual Invariance

    VIII. Rhythm and Movement: Embodied Cognition




10 Music Performance: Movement and Coordination

    I. Introduction

    II. Movement in Performance

    III. Ensemble Performance

    IV. Summary



11 Musical Development

    I. Origins of Music

    II. Musical Development in a Social Context

    III. Musical Enculturation and Critical Periods for Musical Acquisition

    IV. Music Production: Development of Singing

    V. Effects of Formal Music Training on Musical Development

    VI. Interactions between Music Experience and Nonmusical Abilities

    VII. General Conclusions



12 Music and Cognitive Abilities

    I. Introduction

    II. Music Aptitude and Cognitive Abilities

    III. Cognitive Abilities after Listening to Music

    IV. Background Music and Cognitive Abilities

    V. Music Training and Cognitive Abilities

    VI. Conclusions



13 The Biological Foundations of Music: Insights from Congenital Amusia

    I. Congenital Amusia

    II. Pitch Is Special

    III. Right Frontotemporal Connectivity Is Key

    IV. Music Genes

    V. Limited Plasticity

    VI. Conclusions



14 Brain Plasticity Induced by Musical Training

    I. Introduction

    II. Behavioral Studies: The Effects of Musical Training on Cognitive Performance

    III. Imaging Studies: The Effects of Musical Training on Brain Organization

    IV. Auditory-Motor Interactions Underlie Music and Language Learning

    V. Music-based Treatments to Modulate Brain Plasticity: Melodic Intonation Therapy and Auditory-Motor Mapping Training

    VI. Concluding Remarks



15 Music and Emotion

    I. History

    II. Emotion Theory

    III. Perception of Emotion

    IV. Arousal of Emotion

    V. Themes in Current Research

    VI. Implications and Outlook


16 Comparative Music Cognition: Cross-Species and Cross-Cultural Studies

    I. Introduction

    II. Cross-Species Studies

    III. Cross-Cultural Studies

    IV. Conclusion



17 Psychologists and Musicians: Then and Now

    I. Helmholtz and Basevi in the 1860s

    II. Seashore and Kurth in the 1920s

    III. France's and Meyer in the 1950s

    IV. Psychologists and Musicians Today

    V. A Continuing Challenge


Author Index

Subject Index

Quotes and reviews

"The editor has succeeded admirably in making…a valuable and timely resource for musicians and psychologists…" CHOICE

"I have… several dozen excellent books about music perception and cognition, but none is more dog-eared or more used than the Psychology of Music… The first edition's influence on the field makes a compelling argument for the purchase of this updated and revised version, certain to be a blueprint for new research and a leading resource for many years to come." MUSIC PERCEPTION

"The attributes of the book are thoroughness, authority and clarity. That one volume can so adeptly select, draw on, arrange, assess, amplify its material and invite the reader to draw meaningful and reliable conclusions relevant to his/her love of music is a huge achievement. That the book does so with apposite and well-adduced illustrations while at the same time blending technical and specialist accuracy with accessibility is remarkable. Thoroughness and interest, a refreshing amalgam of (the authors') enthusiasm with their collective and individual command of the literature and practices in the field(s) of each make it nothing short of superb as a reference (to be consulted) and a narrative (to be read from cover to cover) by lovers of serious music of all types." - EXCERPT BY MARK SEALEY for www.classicalnet.com


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