Music, Art & Minds

Applying computing to the disciplines of art, music and psychology.

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Music, Arts and Minds

Researchers in the Department have been working since 2004 on ways to use modern information technology to serve the discipline of musicology – the deep study of music. 

Musicology traditionally privileges lone scholarship, based on the principle of ‘close reading’ of a small number of ‘texts’ (historical documents or modern editions produced from them).

Modern computing technology – in particular, the explosion of digitised resources available on the internet – makes possible a new approach, a form of ‘distant reading’ of large numbers of sources in order to come up with generalised observations.

While this is a method close to those of the social sciences, it is essential that it is done with musical understanding and contextual awarenessrather than by naïve applying fashionable data-mining techniques in the hope of gaining insights. 

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Research Highlights 

Prof Tim Crawford is the UK PI for TROMPA, a H2020 collaborative research project. This is a nine partner consortium of research partners across Europe,. The project aims to enrich and democratise our publicly available musical heritage through a user-centred co-creation setup.

For analysing and linking music data at scale, the project will employ and improve state-of-the-art technology. Music-loving citizens (including the large scene of amateur performers) will cooperate with the technology, giving feedback on algorithmic results, and annotating the data according to their personal expertise. 

Prof Atau Tanaka portfolio of research projects in the area of music, including two EU projects RAPID Mix and an ERC research project called, Bio-Music 

Research Groups