The dominance of haptics over audition in controlling wrist velocity during striking movements.
Exp Brain Res. 2016 Apr;234(4):1145-58
Authors: Cao Y, Giordano BL, Avanzini F, McAdams S
Skilled interactions with sounding objects, such as drumming, rely on resolving the uncertainty in the acoustical and tactual feedback signals generated by vibrating objects. Uncertainty may arise from mis-estimation of the objects' geometry-independent mechanical properties, such as surface stiffness. How multisensory information feeds back into the fine-tuning of sound-generating actions remains unexplored. Participants (percussionists, non-percussion musicians, or non-musicians) held a stylus and learned to control their wrist velocity while repeatedly striking a virtual sounding object whose surface stiffness was under computer control. Sensory feedback was manipulated by perturbing the surface stiffness specified by audition and haptics in a congruent or incongruent manner. The compensatory changes in striking velocity were measured as the motor effects of the sensory perturbations, and sensory dominance was quantified by the asymmetry of congruency effects across audition and haptics. A pronounced dominance of haptics over audition suggested a superior utility of somatosensation developed through long-term experience with object exploration. Large interindividual differences in the motor effects of haptic perturbation potentially arose from a differential reliance on the type of tactual prediction error for which participants tend to compensate: vibrotactile force versus object deformation. Musical experience did not have much of an effect beyond a slightly greater reliance on object deformation in mallet percussionists. The bias toward haptics in the presence of crossmodal perturbations was greater when participants appeared to rely on object deformation feedback, suggesting a weaker association between haptically sensed object deformation and the acoustical structure of concomitant sound during everyday experience of actions upon objects.
PMID: 26790425 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Active Drumming Experience Increases Infants' Sensitivity to Audiovisual Synchrony during Observed Drumming Actions.
PLoS One. 2015;10(6):e0130960
Authors: Gerson SA, Schiavio A, Timmers R, Hunnius S
In the current study, we examined the role of active experience on sensitivity to multisensory synchrony in six-month-old infants in a musical context. In the first of two experiments, we trained infants to produce a novel multimodal effect (i.e., a drum beat) and assessed the effects of this training, relative to no training, on their later perception of the synchrony between audio and visual presentation of the drumming action. In a second experiment, we then contrasted this active experience with the observation of drumming in order to test whether observation of the audiovisual effect was as effective for sensitivity to multimodal synchrony as active experience. Our results indicated that active experience provided a unique benefit above and beyond observational experience, providing insights on the embodied roots of (early) music perception and cognition.
PMID: 26111226 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Action expertise reduces brain activity for audiovisual matching actions: an fMRI study with expert drummers.
Neuroimage. 2011 Jun 01;56(3):1480-92
Authors: Petrini K, Pollick FE, Dahl S, McAleer P, McKay LS, McKay L, Rocchesso D, Waadeland CH, Love S, Avanzini F, Puce A
When we observe someone perform a familiar action, we can usually predict what kind of sound that action will produce. Musical actions are over-experienced by musicians and not by non-musicians, and thus offer a unique way to examine how action expertise affects brain processes when the predictability of the produced sound is manipulated. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to scan 11 drummers and 11 age- and gender-matched novices who made judgments on point-light drumming movements presented with sound. In Experiment 1, sound was synchronized or desynchronized with drumming strikes, while in Experiment 2 sound was always synchronized, but the natural covariation between sound intensity and velocity of the drumming strike was maintained or eliminated. Prior to MRI scanning, each participant completed psychophysical testing to identify personal levels of synchronous and asynchronous timing to be used in the two fMRI activation tasks. In both experiments, the drummers' brain activation was reduced in motor and action representation brain regions when sound matched the observed movements, and was similar to that of novices when sound was mismatched. This reduction in neural activity occurred bilaterally in the cerebellum and left parahippocampal gyrus in Experiment 1, and in the right inferior parietal lobule, inferior temporal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus and precentral gyrus in Experiment 2. Our results indicate that brain functions in action-sound representation areas are modulated by multimodal action expertise.
PMID: 21397699 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Multisensory integration of drumming actions: musical expertise affects perceived audiovisual asynchrony.
Exp Brain Res. 2009 Sep;198(2-3):339-52
Authors: Petrini K, Dahl S, Rocchesso D, Waadeland CH, Avanzini F, Puce A, Pollick FE
We investigated the effect of musical expertise on sensitivity to asynchrony for drumming point-light displays, which varied in their physical characteristics (Experiment 1) or in their degree of audiovisual congruency (Experiment 2). In Experiment 1, 21 repetitions of three tempos x three accents x nine audiovisual delays were presented to four jazz drummers and four novices. In Experiment 2, ten repetitions of two audiovisual incongruency conditions x nine audiovisual delays were presented to 13 drummers and 13 novices. Participants gave forced-choice judgments of audiovisual synchrony. The results of Experiment 1 show an enhancement in experts' ability to detect asynchrony, especially for slower drumming tempos. In Experiment 2 an increase in sensitivity to asynchrony was found for incongruent stimuli; this increase, however, is attributable only to the novice group. Altogether the results indicated that through musical practice we learn to ignore variations in stimulus characteristics that otherwise would affect our multisensory integration processes.
PMID: 19404620 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]