Listening to Music
What the MUSIC you LOVE says about YOU
Presented by Susan Rogers
Saturday, February 10, 3:30 PM
About this Lecture:
Professor of cognitive neuroscience and former record producer (Prince, David Byrne, Barenaked Ladies) Susan Rogers presents a new model of music cognition describing the listener profile—a set of mental “sweet spots” where music’s features lead to the individual’s strongest response. Just as we do with food and clothing, our musical taste forms over a lifetime of positive and negative experiences to create a unique profile for each music lover. New research into spontaneous thought processes such as daydreaming reveals that the neural network forming our self-image increases its activity when our minds wander. This same network is also activated when we enjoy our favorite music. Thus, the music we love the most reveals our sense of self and provides a way for us to share ourselves with others. How music preferences form and how they differ will be discussed.
Susan Rogers holds a doctoral degree in experimental psychology from McGill University (2010). Prior to her science career, Susan was a multiplatinum-earning record producer, engineer, mixer and audio technician. She is best known for her work with Prince (1983-1987) but production/engineering credits also include David Byrne, Barenaked Ladies, Geggy Tah, Nil Lara, Robben Ford, Tricky, Michael Penn, and Jeff Black. In 2021 she became the first female recipient of the Music Producer’s Guild Award for Outstanding Contributions to U.K. Music. She recently retired from Berklee College of Music, Boston, where she taught psychoacoustics and record production in the department of Music Production & Engineering. Her book on music listening for W. W. Norton is titled This Is What It Sounds Like: What the Music You Love Says About You.
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