Upcoming Events

  • ruth Rosenberg's poster

Wednesday, April 10, 2019 | 3:30-5 pm Music Room 1145, UC Santa Barbara

432 Hz music is a relatively recent internet-based phenomenon that has attracted listeners and musicians from all parts of the world. Increasingly connected via social media, a community of listeners has emerged that is diverse in musical taste and proclivity, but has in common a belief that music tuned to the standard pitch of A-440 Hz is “out of tune” with nature and humanity. Instead, they find music tuned to an A-432 Hz standard provides a better listening experience and could be beneficial to listeners physically, psychologically, even spiritually. Drawing from research into the historical and scientific claims made by 432 Hz advocates, as well as from data collected from dedicated 432 Hz listeners, this talk will examine the promise of—and skepticism towards—the concept of “frequency” in this context. It will ask how the 432 Hz phenomenon relates to other internet-based forms of music consumption, self- tracking and wellness trends, and what Anahid Kassabian has called today’s culture of “ubiquitous listening.”

RUTH E. ROSENBERG is Associate Professor of Music at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where she teaches courses in musicology and ethnomusicology. Her first book (and ongoing work) concerns the place of music and sound in 19th-century French travel writing. Her most recent work concerns the history of tuning standards and the 432 Hz music phenomenon, with special focus on the experiences of dedicated listeners.

Cosponsored by UCSB Ethnomusicology Forum, Music History and Theory Forum, and the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM)


  1. April 10, 2019 - 3:30pm to 5:00pm

The Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM) is an association of faculty and students at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) that promotes the study of music across academic disciplines. CISM begins with the position that music is an important and powerful cultural practice, which becomes fundamental in shaping the materialities and methods of social life. By sponsoring diverse projects that engage multiple fields of knowledge, CISM works to expand the boundaries of traditional music research by creating an environment for high-level study and discussion of music that is not restricted to specialists.