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Improvisation and the self-organization of multiple musical bodies.

Walton AE, Richardson MJ, Langland-Hassan P, Chemero A - Front Psychol (2015)

Bottom Line: Investigations of this behavior have traditionally focused on describing the organization of cognitive structures.The focus, here, however, is on the ability of the time-evolving patterns of inter-musician movement coordination as revealed by the mathematical tools of complex dynamical systems to provide a new understanding of what potentiates the novelty of spontaneous musical action.Revealing the sophistication of the previously unexplored dynamics of movement coordination between improvising musicians is an important step toward understanding how creative musical expressions emerge from the spontaneous coordination of multiple musical bodies.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Center for Cognition, Action and Perception, University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH, USA.

ABSTRACT
Understanding everyday behavior relies heavily upon understanding our ability to improvise, how we are able to continuously anticipate and adapt in order to coordinate with our environment and others. Here we consider the ability of musicians to improvise, where they must spontaneously coordinate their actions with co-performers in order to produce novel musical expressions. Investigations of this behavior have traditionally focused on describing the organization of cognitive structures. The focus, here, however, is on the ability of the time-evolving patterns of inter-musician movement coordination as revealed by the mathematical tools of complex dynamical systems to provide a new understanding of what potentiates the novelty of spontaneous musical action. We demonstrate this approach through the application of cross wavelet spectral analysis, which isolates the strength and patterning of the behavioral coordination that occurs between improvising musicians across a range of nested time-scales. Revealing the sophistication of the previously unexplored dynamics of movement coordination between improvising musicians is an important step toward understanding how creative musical expressions emerge from the spontaneous coordination of multiple musical bodies.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Macroscopic and microscopic interaction involved in musical improvisation. (A) Structural changes in visual and auditory information about co-performers actions at both local and global levels serve to constrain musical produce. (B) Adapted from Kugler and Turvey (1987), Illustrates the interaction between the micro and macroscopic scales, here the flow field of information refers to a the time-evolving structures of sound and light that are informative about current, future and past actions of the musicians as a group.
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Figure 4: Macroscopic and microscopic interaction involved in musical improvisation. (A) Structural changes in visual and auditory information about co-performers actions at both local and global levels serve to constrain musical produce. (B) Adapted from Kugler and Turvey (1987), Illustrates the interaction between the micro and macroscopic scales, here the flow field of information refers to a the time-evolving structures of sound and light that are informative about current, future and past actions of the musicians as a group.

Mentions: Instead of being concerned with the infinite possibilities available for musical expression in improvisatory performance, one can investigate how continuous information about the co-performer’s actions constrains, or limits, the range of expression a musician will produce when engaged in such coordination. As illustrated in Figure 4, the macroscopic musical performance that emerges during improvisation is both a result of the action as well as induces structure in auditory and visual information that further shapes the performances of the musicians. Figures 4A illustrates how the strength and relative phase of inter-musician coordination at the microscopic levels of the fingers, waist, or head movements generates visual and auditory structure, and this structure is then detected by the co-performer and thus constrains their musical performance (Figures 4B).


Improvisation and the self-organization of multiple musical bodies.

Walton AE, Richardson MJ, Langland-Hassan P, Chemero A - Front Psychol (2015)

Macroscopic and microscopic interaction involved in musical improvisation. (A) Structural changes in visual and auditory information about co-performers actions at both local and global levels serve to constrain musical produce. (B) Adapted from Kugler and Turvey (1987), Illustrates the interaction between the micro and macroscopic scales, here the flow field of information refers to a the time-evolving structures of sound and light that are informative about current, future and past actions of the musicians as a group.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4403292&req=5

Figure 4: Macroscopic and microscopic interaction involved in musical improvisation. (A) Structural changes in visual and auditory information about co-performers actions at both local and global levels serve to constrain musical produce. (B) Adapted from Kugler and Turvey (1987), Illustrates the interaction between the micro and macroscopic scales, here the flow field of information refers to a the time-evolving structures of sound and light that are informative about current, future and past actions of the musicians as a group.
Mentions: Instead of being concerned with the infinite possibilities available for musical expression in improvisatory performance, one can investigate how continuous information about the co-performer’s actions constrains, or limits, the range of expression a musician will produce when engaged in such coordination. As illustrated in Figure 4, the macroscopic musical performance that emerges during improvisation is both a result of the action as well as induces structure in auditory and visual information that further shapes the performances of the musicians. Figures 4A illustrates how the strength and relative phase of inter-musician coordination at the microscopic levels of the fingers, waist, or head movements generates visual and auditory structure, and this structure is then detected by the co-performer and thus constrains their musical performance (Figures 4B).

Bottom Line: Investigations of this behavior have traditionally focused on describing the organization of cognitive structures.The focus, here, however, is on the ability of the time-evolving patterns of inter-musician movement coordination as revealed by the mathematical tools of complex dynamical systems to provide a new understanding of what potentiates the novelty of spontaneous musical action.Revealing the sophistication of the previously unexplored dynamics of movement coordination between improvising musicians is an important step toward understanding how creative musical expressions emerge from the spontaneous coordination of multiple musical bodies.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Center for Cognition, Action and Perception, University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH, USA.

ABSTRACT
Understanding everyday behavior relies heavily upon understanding our ability to improvise, how we are able to continuously anticipate and adapt in order to coordinate with our environment and others. Here we consider the ability of musicians to improvise, where they must spontaneously coordinate their actions with co-performers in order to produce novel musical expressions. Investigations of this behavior have traditionally focused on describing the organization of cognitive structures. The focus, here, however, is on the ability of the time-evolving patterns of inter-musician movement coordination as revealed by the mathematical tools of complex dynamical systems to provide a new understanding of what potentiates the novelty of spontaneous musical action. We demonstrate this approach through the application of cross wavelet spectral analysis, which isolates the strength and patterning of the behavioral coordination that occurs between improvising musicians across a range of nested time-scales. Revealing the sophistication of the previously unexplored dynamics of movement coordination between improvising musicians is an important step toward understanding how creative musical expressions emerge from the spontaneous coordination of multiple musical bodies.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus