WHAT IS MUSIC. Solving scientific mystery.pdf

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Solving a Scientic Mystery
The science of music started more than 2000 years ago, when
Pythagoras made his observations about consonant intervals
and ratios of string lengths.
But despite all the advances made in acoustics, psychology,
neuroscience and evolutionary biology, scientists still have no
idea what music is.
The theory in this book is the result of more than 20 years
of research by the author. It explains in detail many of the
familiar features of music: notes, scales, melody, harmony,
chords, home chords, bass, rhythm and repetition.
It also explains the symmetries of music. These symmetries in-
clude invariances under pitch translation, octave translation,
time translation, time scaling, amplitude scaling and pitch
Most importantly, the theory explains the emotional eects of
music, and this explanation sits rmly within the framework of
modern evolutionary theory. For the benet of those not fully
familiar with the concepts of theoretical biology, what this
means is that the theory explains how our ability to respond
to music helps us have more grandchildren.
Copyright c2004, 2005 Philip Dorrell
Published by Philip Dorrell, 2005.
All rights reserved. This online copy of the book “What is Music” may be
downloaded and printed for personal use only.
While every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this book, the
publisher assumes no responsibilities for errors or omissions, or for
damages resulting from the use of information contained herein.
Philip Dorrell asserts his moral right to be identied as the author of this
Revision Date: 22 March 2005
ISBN 1-4116-2117-4
The o cial website for this book is http://whatismusic.info/.
The author’s personal website is http://www.1729.com/, and current
contact details may be found at http://www.1729.com/email.html.
Solving a Scientic Mystery
by Philip Dorrell
Dedicated to
Amanda and Natalie.
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