Familiarity underpins our engagement with music. This book highlights theoretical and empirical considerations about familiarity from three perspectives: listening, musicology and performance. Part I, ’Listening’, addresses familiarity as it relates to listeners’ behaviour and responses to music, specifically in regulating our choice and exposure to music on a daily basis; how we get to know music through regular listening; how comfortable we feel in a Western concert environment; and music’s efficacy as a pain-reliever. Part II, ’Musicology’ exposes the notion of familiarity from varied stances, including appreciation of music in our own and other cultures through ethnomusicology; exploration of the perception of sounds via music analysis; philosophical reflection on the efficiency of communication in musicology; evaluation of the impact of researchers’ musical experiences on their work; and the influence of familiarity in music education. Part III, ’Performance’, focuses on the effects of familiarity in relation to different aspects of Western art and popular performance, including learning and memorizing music; examination of ’groove’ in popular performance; exploration of the role of familiarity in shaping socio-emotional behaviour between members of an ensemble; and consideration about the effects of the unique type of familiarity gained by musicians through the act of performance itself.
Elaine King is Senior Lecturer in Music at the University of Hull, UK. She co-edited Music and Gesture (2006) and New Perspectives on Music and Gesture (2011), and has published book chapters and articles on aspects of ensemble rehearsal and performance, including practice techniques, gestures and team roles. She is a member of the Royal Musical Association (Council, 2009-12) and Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research (Conference Secretary, 2006-12). She is an active cellist, pianist and conductor. Helen M. Prior (née Daynes) is a music psychologist with wide-ranging interests including music performance, music and emotion, music perception and familiarity, and music education. She is currently a Research Assistant at the University of Hull working with Dr Andrew King and Dr Rob MacKay on a project supported by the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts - Nesta, the AHRC and Arts Council England. The project investigates the use of online learning to support peripatetic music lessons in remote rural communities. She has previously lectured in Music and Music Psychology at the Universities of Hull and Sheffield. She has also undertaken research at King's College, London with Professor Daniel Leech-Wilkinson on a project investigating Shaping Music in Performance as part of the AHRC Research Centre for Musical Performance as Creative Practice (CMPCP). She is a member of the Royal Musical Association and Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research.