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Repetition enhances the musicality of speech and tone stimuli to similar degrees

By Adam Tierney, A. Patel and M. Breen


Certain spoken phrases, when removed from context and repeated, begin to sound as if they \ud were sung. Prior work has uncover\ud ed\ud several\ud acoustic factors which \ud determine wh\ud ether a phrase \ud sounds sung after repetition\ud . However, the reason why repetition is necessary for \ud song to be \ud perceived in speech is unclear\ud . One possibility is that \ud by default \ud pitch is not a salient attribute of \ud speech in non\ud -\ud tonal languages, as spectral information is more vital for determining meaning. \ud However, repetition may satiate lexical \ud processing\ud , increas\ud ing\ud pitch salience. A second possibility is \ud \ud that it takes time to e\ud stablish the precise \ud pitch perception\ud necessary for as\ud signing \ud each syllable a \ud \ud musical scale degree\ud . Here we tested these hypotheses by asking participants to rate the musicality \ud \ud of spoken phrases \ud and complex tones \ud with matching pitch contours\ud after each of\ud eight repetitions. \ud \ud Although musicality ratings were overall higher for the tone stimuli, both the speech and complex \ud tone stimuli increased in musicality \ud to a similar degree \ud with repetition. Thus, although \ud the rapid \ud spectral \ud variation\ud of speech\ud may \ud inhibi\ud t \ud pitch salience\ud , this inhibition does not decrease with \ud repetition. Instead, repetition may be necessary for the perception of song in speech because the perception of exact pitch intervals takes time

Topics: psyc
Publisher: University of California Press
Year: 2018
OAI identifier:

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