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Modeling and Visualizing Tonality in North Indian Classical Music

Modeling and Visualizing Tonality in North Indian Classical Music

This video was recorded at NIPS Workshop on Music, Brain and Cognition, Whistler 2007 . North Indian classical music (NICM) is based on raag, a melodic structure within which musicians improvise. Raags define hierarchical pitch relationships that can be described as tonal. The study of tonality in raag music may help to elucidate whether a cross-culturally valid cognitive model of tonal perception exists. We describe a basic model of tonality in raag music based on pitch-class distributions. We derive visualizations of tonal raag spaces based on self-organizing maps trained on pitch-class distributions calculated on actual performances, as well theoretically derived maps. We discuss implications of the theory and visualizations, as well as anticipated empirical verifications of the model.

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