Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Functional imaging of pitch analysis

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Tim GriffithsORCiD


Full text for this publication is not currently held within this repository. Alternative links are provided below where available.


This work addresses the brain basis for the analysis of pitch and pitch patterns required for normal musical perception. Recent functional imaging experiments are consistent with a hierarchical scheme for the analysis of pitch. Mechanisms in the ascending auditory pathway to the primary auditory cortex allow the representation of the spectral and temporal features of individual notes required for the perception of their pitch. Converging experiments where pitch strength is manipulated in different ways suggest that there may be a "pitch center" in the lateral part of Heschl's gyros, adjacent to the primary auditory area. The suggestion is that there is a representation in this area that correlates with the perception of pitch rather than a simple mapping of physical stimulus characteristics. The analysis of patterns of pitch such as melodies, as opposed to the pitch of individual notes, involves much more distributed processing in the superior temporal lobes and frontal lobes. Involvement of the frontal lobe in pitch pattern analysis may in part reflect whether subjects analyze the pitch patterns in order to carry out an output task.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Griffiths TD

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences: Neurosciences and Music

Year of Conference: 2003

Pages: 40-49

ISSN: 0077-8923

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.

Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 17496632