ISBN: 9780262270755 | 392 pp. | January 2001

Music, Cognition, and Computerized Sound

An Introduction to Psychoacoustics
Edited by Perry R. Cook

How hearing works and how the brain processes sounds entering the ear to provide the listener with useful information are of great interest to psychologists, cognitive scientists, and musicians. However, while a number of books have concentrated on individual aspects of this field, known as psychoacoustics, there has been no comprehensive introductory coverage of the multiple topics encompassed under the term. Music, Cognition, and Computerized Sound is the first book to provide that coverage, and it does so via a unique and useful approach.

The book begins with introductory chapters on the basic physiology and functions of the ear and auditory sections of the brain, then proceeds to discuss numerous topics associated with the study of psychoacoustics, including cognitive psychology and the physics of sound. The book has a particular emphasis on music and computerized sound. An accompanying download includes many sound examples to help explicate the text and is available with the code included in the book at The contributing authors include John Chowning, Perry R. Cook, Brent Gillespie, Daniel J. Levitin, Max Mathews, John Pierce, and Roger Shepard.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. About the Authors
  3. 1. The Ear and How It Works
  4. 2. The Auditory Brain
  5. 3. Cognitive Psychology and Music
  6. 4. Sound Waves and Sine Waves
  7. 5. Introduction to Pitch Perception
  8. 6. What Is Loudness?
  9. 7. Introduction to Timbre
  10. 8. Hearing in Time and Space
  11. 9. Voice Physics and Neurology
  12. 10. Stream Segregation and Ambiguity in Audition
  13. 11. Formant Peaks and Spectral Valleys
  14. 12. Articulation in Speech and Sound
  15. 13. Pitch Perception and Measurement
  16. 14. Consonance and Scales
  17. 15. Tonal Structure and Scales
  18. 16. Pitch, Periodicity, and Noise in the Voice
  19. 17. Memory for Musical Attributes
  20. 18. Haptics
  21. 19. Haptics in Manipulation
  22. 20. Perceptual Fusion and Auditory Perspective
  23. 21. Passive Nonlinearities in Acoustics
  24. 22. Storage and Reproduction of Music
  25. 23. Experimental Design in Psychoacoustic Research
  26. Appendix A
  27. Appendix B
  28. Appendix C
  29. Index