This has been neglected topic but Garner and colleagues did some studies about this with repeating tone patterns (Garner & Gottwald, 1968; Preusser, Garner, & Gottwald, 1970). And I also did a study recently with Petri Toiviainen that addressed this using tapping to excerpts of an organ duet by Bach (Toiviainen & Snyder, 2003). Here are the full references:
Garner, W. R., & Gottwald, R. L. (1968). The perception and learning of temporal patterns.
Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 20, 97-109.
Preusser, D., Garner, W. R., & Gottwald, R. L. (1970). The effect of starting pattern on
descriptions of perceived temporal patterns. Psychonomic Science, 21, 219-220.
Toiviainen, P., & Snyder, J. S. (2003). Tapping to Bach: Resonance-based modeling of pulse. Music Perception, 21, 43-80.
Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 12:40:30 +0000
From: John ffitch <jpff@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: Rhythm perception
We were discussing rhythm patterns the other day and the question came
up about how one determined the start of a pattern. If there is a
heavy emphasis on one beat of the sequence then I can understand that
that is taken as the first beat.
But if the sequence is unemphasised how does one decide? Or do
people decide differently, or is it cultural?
I am not sure where to start to look -- as ever this is outside my
general field of study -- but I though this list might be the place
to ask for clues.
I hope I have explained the question sufficiently!
Joel S. Snyder, Ph.D.
Department of Psychiatry-116A
VA Boston Healthcare System
Harvard Medical School
940 Belmont Street
Brockton, MA 02301
phone: (508) 583-4500 x61624
fax: (508) 580-0057