The Routledge Companion to Music Cognition addresses fundamental questions about the nature of music from a psychological perspective. Music cognition is presented as the field that investigates the psychological, physiological, and physical processes that allow music to take place, seeking to explain how and why music has such powerful and mysterious effects on us. This volume provides a comprehensive overview of research in music cognition, balancing accessibility with depth and sophistication.

A diverse range of global scholars—music theorists, musicologists, pedagogues, neuroscientists, and psychologists—address the implications of music in everyday life while broadening the range of topics in music cognition research, deliberately seeking connections with the kinds of music and musical experiences that are meaningful to the population at large but are often overlooked in the study of music cognition. Such topics include:

  • Music’s impact on physical and emotional health
  • Music cognition in various genres
  • Music cognition in diverse populations, including people with amusia and hearing impairment
  • The relationship of music to learning and accomplishment in academics, sport, and recreation
  • The broader sociological and anthropological uses of music

Consisting of over forty essays, the volume is organized by five primary themes. The first section, "Music from the Air to the Brain," provides a neuroscientific and theoretical basis for the book. The next three sections are based on musical actions: "Hearing and Listening to Music," "Making and Using Music," and "Developing Musicality." The closing section, "Musical Meanings," returns to fundamental questions related to music’s meaning and significance, seen from historical and contemporary perspectives. The Routledge Companion to Music Cognition seeks to encourage readers to understand connections between the laboratory and the everyday in their musical lives.

part 1|111 pages

Music from the Air to the Brain

chapter 1|9 pages

Music from the Air to the Brain and Body

ByEdward W. Large

chapter 2|12 pages

Music in the Brain

Areas and Networks
ByPsyche Loui, Emily Przysinda

chapter 3|11 pages

Music in the brain

Imagery and Memory
ByRebecca S. Schaefer

chapter 4|12 pages

Music in the Brain

Music and Language Processing
ByMireille Besson, Mylène Barbaroux, Eva Dittinger

chapter 5|13 pages

Music and the Brain

Music and Cognitive Abilities
ByReyna L. Gordon, Cyrille L. Magne

chapter 6|11 pages

Music, Brain, and Movement

Time, Beat, and Rhythm
ByMolly J. Henry, Jessica A. Grahn

chapter 7|13 pages

Music and Health

Physical, Mental, and Emotional
BySuv i Saar ikallio

chapter 8|11 pages

Music, Moments, and Healing Process

Music Therapy
ByJörg Fachner

chapter 9|11 pages

Music, Pleasure, and Social Affiliation

Hormones and Neurotransmitters
ByRoni Granot

part 2|136 pages

Hearing and Listening to Music

chapter 10|13 pages

Musical Structure

Time and Rhythm
ByPeter Martens, Fernando Benadon

chapter 11|11 pages

Musical Structure

Sound and Timbre
ByStephen McAdams, Meghan Goodchild

chapter 12|11 pages

Musical Structure

Tonality, Melody, Harmonicity, and Counterpoint
ByDaniel Shanahan

chapter 13|12 pages

Musical Structure

Melody, Texture, and Harmony in the Classical Tradition
ByRobert Gjerdingen

chapter 14|13 pages

Harmony and Melody in Popular Music

ByDavid Temperley, Trevor de Clercq

chapter 15|12 pages

Musical Structure

ByRichard Ashley

chapter 16|11 pages

Music Production

Recording Technologies and Acousmatic Listening
ByRagnhild Brøvig-Hanssen, Anne Danielsen

chapter 17|9 pages

Musical Connections

Absolute Pitch
ByElizabeth West Marvin

chapter 18|12 pages

Musical Connections

Cross-modal Correspondences
ByZohar Eitan

chapter 19|11 pages

Musical Connections

Music Perception and Neurological Deficits
ByBarbara Tillmann, Catherine Hirel, Yohana Lévêque, Anne Caclin

chapter 20|12 pages

Assisted Music Listening in Hearing Loss

ByTonya R. Bergeson, Rachael Frush Holt

part 3|140 pages

Making and Using Music

chapter 21|13 pages

Creating Music

ByRoger T. Dean

chapter 22|11 pages

Music Improvisation

A Challenge for Empirical Research
ByPeter Vuust, Morten L. Kringelbach

chapter 23

Performing Music

Written Traditions
ByDorottya Fabian

chapter 24|11 pages

Performing Music

Oral and Improvising Traditions
ByNikki Moran

chapter 25|12 pages

Performing Music

Humans, Computers, and Electronics
ByElaine Chew, Andrew McPherson

chapter 26|12 pages

Music With Others

Ensembles, Conductors, and Interpersonal Coordination
ByClemens Wöllner, Peter E. Keller

chapter 27|11 pages

Music Alone and With Others

Listening, Sharing, and Celebrating
ByAlexandra Lamont

chapter 28|12 pages

Music and Text

Vocal Musicianship
ByAnnabel J. Cohen

chapter 29|13 pages

Music and Movement

Musical Instruments and Performers
ByLaura Bishop, Werner Goebl

chapter 30|14 pages

Scene and Heard

The Role of Music in Shaping Interpretations of Film
BySiu-Lan Tan

chapter 31|12 pages

Music as Enabling

Enhancing Sport, Work, and Other Pursuits
ByNicola Dibben

part 4|75 pages

Developing Musicality

chapter 32|11 pages

Music Across the Species

ByBruno Gingras

chapter 33|12 pages

Music Cognition

Developmental and Multimodal Perspectives
BySandra E. Trehub, Michael W. Weiss

chapter 34|12 pages

Musical Expertise

Genetics, Experience, and Training
ByWilliam Forde Thompson, Miriam A. Mosing, Fredrik Ullén

chapter 35|13 pages

Learning Music

Informal Processes and Their Outcomes
ByLucy Green, Tim Smart

chapter 36|12 pages

Music and Social Cognition in Adolescence

BySusan A. O’Neill

chapter 37|11 pages

Musical Preference

Personality, Style, and Music Use
ByJonna K. Vuoskoski

part 5|69 pages

Musical Meanings

chapter 38|11 pages

Music Cognition

Investigations Through the Centuries
ByKyung Myun Lee

chapter 39|10 pages

Music and Communication

ByRichard Ashley

chapter 40|12 pages

Emotion in Music Listening

ByRenee Timmers

chapter 41|12 pages

Music, Analogy, and Metaphor

ByLawrence M. Zbikowski

chapter 42|10 pages

Musical Aesthetics and Values

ByElizabeth Hellmuth Margulis

chapter 43|11 pages

Music's Meanings

ByEric F. Clarke