Creative thinking about musical similarity

Patrick E. Savage, Associate Professor at Keio University in Tokyo, specializes in comparative study of the world’s music. He recently completed his PhD dissertation at Tokyo University of the Arts, in which he discusses how theories of biological evolution may be applied to understanding the evolution of musical works. In Chapter 4 he discusses how quantitative measurement of the evolution of melodies over time may inform and predict determinations of infringement in copyright disputes involving musical works: PDF. Here is a link to his recent “Quantitative Evaluation of Music Copyright Infringement,” to be published in the Proceedings of the 8th International Workshop, Folk Music Analysis (2018): PDF. Dénés Pinter, a musicologist in Hungary, has investigated similar issues of whether, and how, comparative analysis of various musical parameters of disputed works may inform decisions on infringement. He has published his work in this area on this website.