Music can be a powerful inductor of intense emotions in humans. I the last years, unraveling brain correlates of music evoked emotions have become a hot topic in neuroscience community. Yet, little is known about the functional and integrative role of auditory cortex in emotional aspects of music processing. And although some studies compare distinct musical emotions directly, few studies have investigated the comparison within specific positive emotions. In the present study, participants with musical background listened to forty musical pieces of joy and tenderness of diverse genres while scanned by Functional Magnetic Resonance while feeling or not feeling the emotion (technical task). We aimed to investigate the pattern of functional integration between associative auditory cortex (superior temporal gyrus, STG) with regions of the limbic system and supplementary motor area (SMA). To our knowledge, our study is the first to investigate the brain pattern of connectivity of STG to distinct positive musical emotions, such as joy and tenderness.
Supervisor: Jorge Moll