Sunday, November 01, 2015

Finding the right question

I just realized I was asking the wrong question in my current research agenda. While finding out if average listeners are aware of the timbres involved can satisfy some curiosity, it is not the real thing I want to know. At one point David Huron told me that all researchers need to ask the God Question: "if you got to meet God, and ask Him one question, what would it be?"  My God Question is "How can I help people get the most out of music?" And then I narrow that to encompass my specific interest in timbre: "Does awareness of timbre positively affect music appreciation?"  And for that I can see if teaching a listener about timbre causes physiological changes when listening, and if it changes aesthetic responses in post-listening questionnaires or in-listening rating systems.