The Repeated Recording Illusion. The Effects of Extrinsic and Individual Difference Factors on Musical Judgments

Anglada-Tort, Manuel and Müllensiefen, Daniel. 2017. The Repeated Recording Illusion. The Effects of Extrinsic and Individual Difference Factors on Musical Judgments. Music Perception, 35(1), pp. 94-117. ISSN 0730-7829 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The repeated recording illusion refers to the phenomenon in which listeners believe to hear different musical stimuli while they are in fact identical. The present paper aims to construct an experimental paradigm to enable the systematic measurement of this phenomenon, investigating potentially related extrinsic and individual difference factors. Participants were told to listen to “different” musical performances of an original piece when in fact they were exposed to the same repeated recording. Each time, the recording was accompanied by a text suggesting a low, medium, or high prestige of the performer. Most participants (75%) believed that they had heard different musical performances. Participants with high levels of neuroticism and openness were significantly more likely to fall for the illusion. While the explicit information presented with the music influenced participants’ ratings significantly, the effect of repeated exposure was only significant in the more familiar music condition. These results suggest that like many other human judgments, evaluations of music also rely on cognitive biases and heuristics that do not depend on the stimuli themselves. The repeated recording illusion can constitute a useful paradigm for investigating nonmusical factors because it allows for the study of their effects while the music remains the same.

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aesthetics, individual differences, explicit information, music performance, judgments and preferences

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24 February 2017Accepted
14 August 2017Published Online
1 September 2017Published

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Date Deposited:

19 Sep 2017 16:25

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:34

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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