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In Time With the Music: The Concept of Entrainment and Its Significance for Ethnomusicology

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Entrainment, broadly defined, is a phenomenon in which two or more independent rhythmic processes synchronize with each other. To illuminate the significance of entrainment for various directions of music research and promote a nuanced understanding of the concept among ethnomusicologists, this publication opens with an exposition of entrainment research in various disciplines, from physics to linguistics and psychology, while systematically introducing basic concepts that are directly relevant to musical entrainment. Topics covered include consideration of self-synchrony and interpersonal synchrony in musical performance, humans’ innate propensities to entrain, the influence of cultural and personal factors on entrainment, the numerous functions of musical entrainment in individual health, socialization, and cultural identification, and a presentation of methodologies and analytical techniques. Finally, some case studies illustrating one methodological strand, that of chronometric analysis, exemplify how the application of the entrainment concept might lead to an understanding of music making and music perception as an integrated, embodied and interactive process.
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... In het dagelijks leven roept het luisteren naar muziek lichamelijke reacties op, zelfs onbewust. Dat gebeurt bijvoorbeeld door de neiging van het lichaam om spontaan motorisch te synchroniseren met de beat, zoals bij het tikken met een vinger of lopen (Clayton et al., 2005;Bispham, 2006). Volgens lijkt de luisteraar zelfs bij het observeren van de uitvoerder te synchroniseren met diens schouderbewegingen. ...
... In everyday life, listening to music elicits bodily responses, even unconsciously. For example, it occurs through the body's tendency to use motor synchronisation on the beat, such as tapping a finger or walking (Clayton et al., 2005;Bispham, 2006). Even when observing the performer, according to , the listener seems to synchronize with the shoulders' movements of the performer. ...
... At the same time, in everyday life, we may move to the music by synchronizing or aligning our body movement to the musical features (Clayton et al., 2005;, or we may represent the piece graphically, through marks mirroring the movement of the sound and through evocative figurative images (Godoy, 2010;Kussner, 2014) or we may describe the music verbally. The above-mentioned multimodal interactions with the music (e.g., bodily interpretation, verbal description, and graphic representation) seem integrated with each other and complementary in the way they represent a musical phenomenon. ...
Thesis
As increasingly confirmed within the paradigm of embodied music cognition, the body shapes the way listeners perceive and make sense of music. Accordingly, this Ph.D research project aims to understand the role of body movement on children’s musical sense-making through two empirical studies setup in an educational ecological setting of primary school. In both studies, the children’s graphical representations of the music and their verbal explanations of the drawings were used to probe children’s musical sense-making. The first study investigated how and in what way a verbal vs. bodily interaction with the music influences the children musical sense-making. Results offer relevant insights into the role of body movement to enhance the identification of more musical features and their temporal organization. Based on the findings of the first study, a second study was carried out to investigate the influence of different qualities (discrete vs. continuous movements) of bodily interactions with music on children’ music meaning formation. Findings of the second study show that based on the quality of movement interaction the children changed the categories of visual representations, arousal, and number of voices of the music described. At a meta- perspective level, the adoption of a multimodal approach (e.g., bodily, visual, and verbal) emerged to be an effective mean to enhance a deeper music understanding. In addition, body movement appears to be a viable way to foster a creative listening through creative navigation of the musical affordance landscape.
... Even young children are sensitive to the social and linguistic signals carried by rhythm [8][9][10] , and parents use rhythmic vocalizations and synchronous movement (for example, lullabies and rocking) to interact with their infants from birth 11,12 . Rhythmic musical interactions are structured around the percept of a stable periodic pulse (termed the 'beat' in Western music and present in the music of most cultures 1,13 , though its precise instantiation in musical structure varies cross-culturally 14,15 ). While music in general and rhythmic structures in particular vary globally [15][16][17] , there is evidence that the hierarchical beat structure of most music is robust to cultural transmission 2 and indeed common in many types of music 1 . ...
... Rhythmic musical interactions are structured around the percept of a stable periodic pulse (termed the 'beat' in Western music and present in the music of most cultures 1,13 , though its precise instantiation in musical structure varies cross-culturally 14,15 ). While music in general and rhythmic structures in particular vary globally [15][16][17] , there is evidence that the hierarchical beat structure of most music is robust to cultural transmission 2 and indeed common in many types of music 1 . ...
Article
Moving in synchrony to the beat is a fundamental component of musicality. Here we conducted a genome-wide association study to identify common genetic variants associated with beat synchronization in 606,825 individuals. Beat synchronization exhibited a highly polygenic architecture, with 69 loci reaching genome-wide significance (P < 5 × 10−8) and single-nucleotide-polymorphism-based heritability (on the liability scale) of 13%–16%. Heritability was enriched for genes expressed in brain tissues and for fetal and adult brain-specific gene regulatory elements, underscoring the role of central-nervous-system-expressed genes linked to the genetic basis of the trait. We performed validations of the self-report phenotype (through separate experiments) and of the genome-wide association study (polygenic scores for beat synchronization were associated with patients algorithmically classified as musicians in medical records of a separate biobank). Genetic correlations with breathing function, motor function, processing speed and chronotype suggest shared genetic architecture with beat synchronization and provide avenues for new phenotypic and genetic explorations. Niarchou et al. identify 69 genomic loci associated with people’s synchronization to a musical beat. The genetic architecture of beat synchronization was enriched for genes involved in early brain development and lifelong brain function.
... After the entraining stream stops the oscillator exhibits a reverberation at the driving frequency for several cycles." Some definitions of entrainment require that an external oscillator unidirectionally influences a powered oscillator (Lakatos et al., 2019) but other definitions allow for mutual entrainment, "whereby two rhythmic processes interact with each other in such a way that they adjust toward and eventually 'lock in' to a common phase and/or periodicity" (Clayton et al., 2005). In this article, entrainment is treated as the mechanism for synchronization (synchronization through entrainment) and both terms are treated as types of resonance (see Box 3). ...
... The previous example shows how rhythmic human activity can be investigated as a context for physical resonance phenomena. Rhythmic human interactions clearly occur in artistic domains, such as music-making (Clayton et al., 2005), dance (Larsson et al., 2019) and various kinds of cultural rituals like chanting (Gelfand et al., 2020). Rhythmic interactions are also common in everyday life, as in the case of walking, conversational turn-taking (McGarva and Warner, 2003;Wilson and Wilson, 2005;Lee et al., 2010), patterns of eye contact (Wohltjen and Wheatley, 2021) or with interactions like handshakes (Melnyk and Hénaff, 2019). ...
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Resonance, a powerful and pervasive phenomenon, appears to play a major role in human interactions. This article investigates the relationship between the physical mechanism of resonance and the human experience of resonance, and considers possibilities for enhancing the experience of resonance within human–robot interactions. We first introduce resonance as a widespread cultural and scientific metaphor. Then, we review the nature of “sympathetic resonance” as a physical mechanism. Following this introduction, the remainder of the article is organized in two parts. In part one, we review the role of resonance (including synchronization and rhythmic entrainment) in human cognition and social interactions. Then, in part two, we review resonance-related phenomena in robotics and artificial intelligence (AI). These two reviews serve as ground for the introduction of a design strategy and combinatorial design space for shaping resonant interactions with robots and AI. We conclude by posing hypotheses and research questions for future empirical studies and discuss a range of ethical and aesthetic issues associated with resonance in human–robot interactions.
... Common pleasurable emotional experiences with music [81] suggests that a species-wide neurophysiological mechanism exists, simultaneously associated with shifts in autonomic activity reported by Hsiung and colleagues [19] and Sakamoto and colleagues [30], and prosocial behaviors reported by Kirschner and Tomasello [44] and Rabinowitch and colleagues [45]. This mechanism may be entrainment, defined as "a phenomenon in which two or more independent rhythmic processes synchronize with each other" [82]. Entrainment may relate to aspects of the positive social interactions observed between individuals living with dementia and their caregivers. ...
... Entrainment may relate to aspects of the positive social interactions observed between individuals living with dementia and their caregivers. Reason being, Clayton and colleagues [82] discuss the social implications of entrainment via interpersonal synchrony, caused by external rhythmic stimuli commonly found in musical styles across cultural groups. ...
Article
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Background: Music-based interventions may help to alleviate neuropsychiatric symptoms of dementia and promote prosocial interactions between individuals living with dementia and their caregivers. However, current literature does not combine these evidence bases toward explanation of how music-based interventions may alleviate symptoms and promote prosocial interactions. Objective: We conducted a scoping review to address the following question: what do the evidence bases suggest toward how music therapy or music-based therapeutic interventions might promote prosocial interactions between individuals living with dementia and their caregivers? Methods: In this review we focused on: 1) quantitative and qualitative evidence of music-based therapies promoting prosocial behaviors in individuals living with dementia, and 2) potential neurobehavioral mechanisms associated with the processes involved with how music may promote prosocial interactions. Databases included PubMed, EBSCOhost's CINAHL and PsycINFO, Cochrane Library (sub-search conducted using ALOIS, the Specialized Register of the Cochrane Dementia and Cognitive Improvement Group), Web of Science, clinicaltrials.gov, ProQuest's Biological Science Collection, the Journal of Music Therapy, Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, and Google Scholar. Results: Sixteen original research studies were included for evidence synthesis. This scoping review reveals the need to define and clarify mechanisms of prosocial interactions between individuals living with dementia and their caregivers considering biological and social factors. These mechanisms may include dynamic interactions between preserved brain regions associated with music-evoked autobiographical memory recall and shifts from negative to positive mood states. Conclusion: Defining and clarifying how and to what extent music may promote prosocial behaviors using well-designed and well-controlled mixed-methods studies may positively influence the design of interventions to promote prosocial interactions with caregivers.
... In the context of long-term research, attention should be paid to the phenomenon of Music Entrainment, i.e., the influence on the human psychosomatic system in the sense of neuronal motor initiation, using appropriately selected and timed auditory stimuli [6]. Because of the natural connection of sonic stimulation with movement behaviour in the broadest sense, it is justified to treat the problems undertaken in music therapy. ...
Chapter
Abstract. The article presents the results of a preliminary study analysing the physiological parameters obtained during exercises that teach the patient’s correct body posture while sitting. Electrodermal activity (EDA), blood volume pulse (BVP), and electromyographic (EMG) signals were recorded and analysed during the training process for position shaping. A music preference and musicality questionnaire was carried out before the study. The JAWS questionnaire was completed twice by the respondent, before and after exercises. The physiotherapists provided instructions with respect to the stimulation of the autonomic nervous system, observed in EDA, heart rate and the subsequent motor units. While performing the exercises, the subjects felt positive emotions, which can be perceived as a positive experience for the probands and suggests their willingness to learn and maintain correct body posture while sitting. The sonification of the therapist’s commands and their sonic emotional content is further researched. Keywords: Body posture · Frankfurt position · Correct sitting posture · Electromyography · Electrodermal activity · Heart rate variability
... All technical characteristics of the music followed the indications provided by previous literature [14][15][16]. In detail (further information available in Supplementary Materials), 432 Hz tuned music was specifically chosen for its physical and mathematical properties, which determine a more stable and harmonic sound [17][18][19]; and a frequency (tempo) of 70 beats per minute (bpm) was selected to favor the entrainment, which describes a process whereby two rhythmic processes interact with each other in such a way that they adjust towards and eventually "lock in" to a common phase or periodicity [20,21]. Considering the broad range of HR which we may encounter in a PICU, we chose 70 bpm as the frequency towards which individual HR could be pulled downwards, eliciting greater comfort. ...
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Music is frequently used in different clinical settings, and it is implemented as a complementary, low-cost and useful intervention to reduce pain, anxiety and to improve relaxation. This pilot pre–post study aimed to examine the feasibility and preliminary effectiveness of a specific musical intervention in patients ≤16 years admitted to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) of an Iraqi hospital. The COMFORT Behavior Scale (CBS) was used by nurses to assess the level of sedation. Fifty-nine children were enrolled during the study period (March 2020–August 2021). CBS was lowered by 2.2 (95% CI: 1.9 to 2.6) points after 30 min, and by 3.3 (95% CI: 2.9 to 3.6) points after 60 min from music initiation. Thirty minutes after music initiation, heart rate decreased by 6.3 (95% CI: 4.5 to 8.1) beats per minute, whereas at 60 min, heart rate decreased by 9.1 (95% CI: 7.2 to 10.9) beats per minute. No clinically significant variations were detected in the other vital signs (blood pressure, respiratory rate and oxygen saturation). These findings support the feasibility of musical intervention in a developing country. CBS and heart rate variation may be worth following up in larger and conclusive studies.
... Phillips-Silver et al., (2010) parlent, eux, d'entraînement social lorsque des individus se coentraînent c'est-à-dire lorsque les sorties rythmiques générées par les uns deviennent les entrées rythmiques des autres [264]. Ce phénomène, aussi appelé entraînement interpersonnel, est présent chez de nombreuses espèces [56]. Il peut avoir lieu de façon unidirectionnelle, c'est-à-dire quand un individu s'adapte à un signal rythmique, social ou non et que celui-ci ne s'adapte pas en retour (voir Figure 1.2 a). ...
Thesis
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Dans le cadre de cette thèse, notre objectif est de contribuer à une meilleure compréhension des adaptations rythmiques non intentionnelles par le biais d’une approche pluridisciplinaire alliant études expérimentales et modélisation computationnelle. Les travaux réalisés peuvent être divisés en deux parties distinctes et complémentaires. La première a pour objet l'étude expérimentale des coordinations non-intentionnelles lors des interactions Homme-Machine. La seconde a quant à elle pour but de réaliser un modèle computationnel intégrant entraînement rythmique et contrôle musculaire, capable de rendre compte des résultats expérimentaux obtenus et de simuler un comportement moteur en adéquation avec les dynamiques observables lors des coordinations non-intentionnelles.Dans la première phase expérimentale, nous nous sommes d’abord intéressés aux coordinations entre patients atteints de schizophrénie et robot lors d’activités physiques. Nous avons fait le choix de nous servir de cette pathologie comme d’un outil pour à la fois éprouver et valider un premier modèle d’entraînement rythmique mais aussi, dans le but de mieux cerner l’origine des coordinations non-intentionnelles. Dans le cas de la schizophrénie, les patients souffrent d’un déficit attentionnel, d’un déficit d’habilités sociales, d’un déficit de coordination intrapersonnelle ainsi que d’une altération des coordinations intentionnelles. Cependant, des études ont montré que leurs coordinations non-intentionnelles lors d’interactions avec des sujets sains étaient quant à elles préservées. Étudier cette pathologie permet donc d’obtenir des informations sur le rôle et l’interaction des différents processus impliqués dans l’émergence des coordinations non-intentionnelles. De plus, le modèle d’entraînement rythmique utilisé pour contrôler le robot a pu être testé et validé dans des conditions mettant en présence une interaction Homme Robot écologique (activité physique)..Toujours dans le cadre de cette phase expérimentale, nous nous sommes, dans un second temps, interrogés sur les processus attentionnels liés la coordination non-intentionnelle et plus particulièrement à son coût attentionnel chez des sujets sains. Nous avons donc mené une expérience dont le but précis a été d’évaluer l’impact de la coordination non-intentionnelle induite par un stimulus visuel dans le cadre d’une forte charge attentionnelle visuelle. Nous avons alors pu, par le biais de différentes conditions, évaluer l’effet de la coordination non-intentionnelle sur les ressources attentionnelles.Dans la deuxième partie de cette thèse, en prenant en considération la littérature consacrée à la modélisation du contrôle moteur et celle sur les coordinations interpersonnelles enrichie de nos deux expériences, nous avons pu développer un modèle computationnel d’entraînement rythmique. Nous nous sommes intéressés à la façon dont l’entraînement rythmique que l’on observe d’un point de vue comportemental pouvait être traduit en commandes motrices envoyées à notre système musculaire afin d'aboutir à des coordinations interpersonnelles. Pour ce faire, nous avons développé en simulation, un modèle de bras articulé actionné par des paires de muscles (agonistes/antagonistes) et contrôlé en force.
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