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{ Category Archives } expression

Falling (water) music

Wow.  The cleverness (and programming patience) of folks amazes me.

When is mood music good for you?

Based on a recent scholarly article, “Should People Pursue Feelings That Feel Good or Feelings That Do Good? Emotional Preferences and Well-Being,” an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education that discusses whether angry moods are sometimes good for us, and how music that induces different moods might affect our performance (in non-musical activities) in […]

Tears for appogiaturas

An article in the Wall Street Journal discussed research, some old. that suggests why certain musical pieces tend to arouse sentiment.  The author focuses on the use of appogiaturas, octave jumps (generally in songs), and transitions from narrow frequency range, low dynamic passages to passages that swell in dynamic and frequency range (think Celine Dion). […]

More virtuosity?

Why does there seem to be such a significant increase in technical proficiency among young pianists (NYT)?  Better diet and training (like athletes)?  Growing population (more chances for genetics to provide outliers)?  Greater wealth enabling more and better study and practice? I was floored by Yuja Wang’s combination of flawless technique (at age 20) and […]

Musical expression and the brain

There’s been interesting work for several years on the importance of expectation — and foiling expectation — in musical expression.  This article in the New York Times seems to think the idea is newer than it is, but it does a reasonable job of making the point, including interviews and examples from significant musicians and […]

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