New Book: Musical Gestures: Sound, Movement, and Meaning

I am happy to announce the publication of the new book Musical Gestures: Sound, Movement, and Meaning edited by Rolf Inge Godøy and Marc Leman (2009). The book is published by Routledge and was released last Friday, although it may take a few days before it hits the book shelves (including Amazon).

The book is based on research carried out in the EU COST Action 287 ConGAS (Gesture controlled audio systems) that ran from 2004 to 2007. I have contributed a chapter called Musical Gestures: concepts and methods in research, co-authored with Marcelo M. Wanderley, Rolf Inge Godøy, and Marc Leman.

Summary of the book: We experience and understand the world, including music, through body movement–when we hear something, we are able to make sense of it by relating it to our body movements, or form an image in our minds of body movements. Musical Gestures is a collection of essays that explore the relationship between sound and movement. It takes an interdisciplinary approach to the fundamental issues of this subject, drawing on ideas, theories and methods from disciplines such as musicology, music perception, human movement science, cognitive psychology, and computer science.

For several years now people have been asking me about what books to buy to get learn more about music and movement. Now I can happily tell them that there are actually several books to buy. Norwegian-reading people looking for an introduction to the field can get my own Musikk og bevegelse, while English-reading people that want a more advanced text book can buy Musical Gestures: Sound, Movement, and Meaning.

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Alexander Refsum Jensenius is a music researcher and research musician living in Oslo, Norway.