Grounding in musical interaction: Evidence from jazz performances
Gratier, M. (2008). Grounding in musical interaction: Evidence from jazz performances. Musicae Scientiae, Special Issue: Narrative in Music and Interaction, 71-110.
This study explores the issue of mutual understanding between musicians in improvised performance. It attempts to describe how improvising musicians indicate to each other that they have grasped each other's expressive intentions in order to collaboratively negotiate common expressive trajectories. The process of moment-to-moment monitoring of shared understanding is referred to as "grounding". Shared knowledge, beliefs and assumptions provide an important basis for grounding and grounding in turn reinforces a "common ground" of shared representation. Based on research on "grounding" in conversational exchange and on studies of nonverbal mother-infant interaction, some possible indices of "grounding" in musical interaction are discussed. Grounding in conversational exchange is attained through acknowledgement, relevance and sustained attention. It is proposed here that displays of mutual understanding between musicians are rooted in a collaboratively negotiated embodied phrasing through which repetition, mirroring and matching, punctuation, and completion and synchronisation might constitute the musical basis for grounding. ...
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