Steven Jan

Steven Jan
University of Huddersfield · Department of Music and Music Technology

PhD

About

20
Publications
7,054
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173
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 2001 - present
University of Huddersfield
Position
  • Lecturer

Publications

Publications (20)
Conference Paper
While music theory and analysis have developed hand-in-hand with the historical evolution of human-generated music ('HGM'), there has been little consideration to date of how they might relate to computer-generated music ('CGM'). While CGM has been the subject of much debate as to how it might be optimised and evaluated, these have focused largely...
Article
Full-text available
While the “units, events and dynamics” of memetic evolution have been abstractly theorized (Lynch, 1998), they have not been applied systematically to real corpora in music. Some researchers, convinced of the validity of cultural evolution in more than the metaphorical sense adopted by much musicology, but perhaps skeptical of some or all of the cl...
Conference Paper
As a singular moment in the western canon, the opening of the recapitulation in the first movement of Beethoven?s Ninth Symphony has prompted a variety of structural and expressive readings. This paper explores its intertextual connections with Mozart?s Don Giovanni from a memetic perspective, outlining certain extra-musical interpretations, includ...
Article
Fostered by the introduction of the Music Information Retrieval Evaluation Exchange (MIREX) competition, the number of systems that calculate symbolic melodic similarity has recently increased considerably. To understand the state of the art, we provide a comparative analysis of existing algorithms. The analysis is based on eight criteria that help...
Article
Full-text available
Cohn (1996) and Taruskin (1985) consider the increasing prominence during the nineteenth century of harmonic progressions derived from the hexatonic and octatonic pitch collections respectively. This development is clearly evident in music of the third quarter of the century onwards and is a consequence of forces towards non-diatonic organization l...
Article
This article discusses some general issues arising from the study of similarity in music, both human-conducted and computer-aided, and then progresses to a consideration of similarity relationships between patterns in a phrase by Beethoven, from the first movement of the Piano Sonata in A flat major op. 110 (1821), and various potential memetic pre...
Article
Steven Mithen argues that language evolved from an antecedent he terms “Hmmmmm, [meaning it was] Holistic, manipulative, multi-modal, musical and mimetic”. Owing to certain innate and learned factors, a capacity for segmentation and cross-stream mapping in early Homo sapiens broke the continuous line of Hmmmmm, creating discrete replicated units wh...
Article
The degree to which orthodox Darwinism is operative in culture is explored in order to determine the extent to which we may regard memetic phenomena as parallel (and therefore hard-Darwinian), not just analogous (and therefore soft-evolutionary) to those in genetics. Connections are drawn between certain natural processes and those hypothesized to...
Article
Full-text available
The climax of the chorus ‘The Heavens are Telling’ from Haydn’s oratorio Die Schöpfung (The Creation) employs a harmonic progression that Beethoven later adapted to conclude the first movement of his Symphony no. 2. An earlier (pre-Haydn) version of the progression might be found in a keyboard rondo by C. P. E. Bach. This harmonic unit is regarded...
Article
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This article explores the interface between evolutionary thought, cognitive science, and music theory. It focuses on how patterns hypothesized to function as memes in music are encoded neurobiologically, using ideas developed by the American theoretical neurophysiologist William Calvin. After recapitulating the precepts and predictions of Universal...
Article
This article discusses the aetiology and evolution of musical structure, specifically the sonata-form exposition, from a memetic perspective. It regards established musical forms as replicated schemata arising from the conglomeration of foreground-level memes, the resultant archetypes (structural memes or Memesätze) being replicated (reinstantiated...
Article
An overview of some uses of the Humdrum Toolkit in shaping and empirically testing aspects of a theory of musical memetics is given. First, the psychological processes that affect pattern perception are discussed. Second, Two case studies using contrasting but related methodologies are investigated to determine to what extent certain patterns are p...
Article
‘Memetics’, a concept most elegantly expounded by Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene, asserts that human culture consists of a multitude of units transmitted between individuals by imitation and subject to evolutionary pressures. Such particles, ‘memes’, are broadly analogous to the genes of biological transmission. Four late pieces of Mozart's, i...
Article
‘Memetics’, a concept most elegantly expounded by Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene , asserts that human culture consists of a multitude of units transmitted between individuals by imitation and subject to evolutionary pressures. Such particles, ‘memes’, are broadly analogous to the genes of biological transmission. Four late pieces of Mozart's,...
Article
The memetic paradigm is herein applied to music. While memetics has been used to elucidate a wide variety of cultural phenomena, its concerns to date have largely been with memes in the realm of verbally-expressible concepts. In view of this, this paper represents an attempt to integrate the central concerns of analytical musicology with a neo-Darw...
Article
Full-text available
The critical literature on composers and their work is often distinguished by as much unsupported speculation as fact - Mozart is no exception to this and it is particularly in the realm of the significance and influence of key in his work that such a tradition of writing has evolved. The key of G minor has received most attention in this respect....

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