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The Effect of Practice and Timbre on Pitch Memory Oby Uguru, Kristin Reardon & Nestor Matthews Department of Psychology, Denison University, Granville,

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Presentation on theme: "The Effect of Practice and Timbre on Pitch Memory Oby Uguru, Kristin Reardon & Nestor Matthews Department of Psychology, Denison University, Granville,"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Effect of Practice and Timbre on Pitch Memory Oby Uguru, Kristin Reardon & Nestor Matthews Department of Psychology, Denison University, Granville, OH Conclusions  The significant increase for backward timbres suggest generalized learning.  The emergence of a timbre/session interaction suggests the significance of timbre in pitch memory processing.  We, like Shellenburg and Trehub have uncovered evidence that support the existence of good pitch memory in humans that do not possess Absolute Pitch.  We have tied this pitch memory to timbre. Previous work has also linked gamma band activity to timbre. Future studies can explore the connection between gamma band activity and pitch memory as linked by timbre Results Pitch memory is defined as the ability to recognize the musical key of a song. It is an interesting ability that most humans possess. Shellenburg and Trehub (2003) supported their hypothesis that contextually rich materials would reveal the generality of long-term memory for pitch and the normal distribution of this ability to remember pitch. That finding served as the platform for our curiosity into the components of pitch memory and the neural events that occur to build pitch memory in humans. Acknowledgments We thank Drs. Bradley Bateman and Keith Boone for assistance in the funding of this project through The Denison University Research Foundation stipend References  Schellenberg, E.G., & Trehub, S.E. Good pitch memory is widespread. Psychological Science(2003); 14,  Chau W, Miller LM, Roberts LE, Shahin AJ, Trainor LJ. Music training leads to the development of timbre-specific gamma band activity. Neuroimage.(2008); Volume 41(1): Abstract The purpose of this study was to explore how humans acquire pitch memory -the ability to recognize the musical key of a song. The current study took place over a seven day period.Within the study, practice time was manipulated by designating 5 of these 7 days as training days. Timbre was also manipulated by playing melodic palindromes forward to backward. A significant effect of timbre and practice was found as well as a significant interaction between the two. This research has supported the idea that memory for pitch is tightly linked to timbre and assists in finding information about how pitch memory is stored in the brain. Discussion  The emergence of a timbre/training interaction implicates the significance of timbre in pitch memory processing.  We, like Shellenburg and Trehub (2003), have uncovered evidence that supports the existence of good pitch memory in humans that do not possess Absolute Pitch.  We have tied this pitch memory to timbre. Chau et al (2008) have linked gamma band activity to timbre. Future studies can explore the connection between gamma band activity and pitch memory as linked by timbre.  The purpose of this study was to better understand human pitch memory - the ability to recognize a song’s musical key. Introduction Purpose Methods Stimuli: Melodic Palindromes Task: “Was that clip sharper (higher) or flatter (lower) than the original?” Procedure  Figure 1- Pitch memory before (Day 1) and after (Day 7) the 5 training days.  Figure 2- Pitch memory throughout the 5 forward training days  Figure 3- Pitch memory at the shared musical keys before (Day 1) and after (Day 7) the 5 training days * * Melody A Melody B


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