We are pleased to announce a 2-day interdisciplinary conference (1-2 November, 2019) on music and lifetime memories, with Featured Lectures from Professor Andrea Halpern (Bucknell University, USA), Professor Lia Kvavilashvili (University of Hertfordshire, UK), Dr. Alexandra Lamont (Keele University, UK), and Professor Catherine Loveday (University of Westminster, UK).


Listening to music can trigger vivid lifetime memories, bringing one back to the sights, sounds, and feelings of past events. Music is often intimately associated with self-defining moments from our lives, and can play a significant role in shaping a person’s identity. Research on the link between music and autobiographical memories is crucial for critically assessing the validity of claims about the “power of music,” informing theoretical accounts of the mechanisms by which music induces emotions, and developing music-based interventions for people with memory disorders.

This conference aims to bring together researchers from music, psychology, neuroscience, anthropology, and other relevant disciplines to address the relationship between music and autobiographical memory, including, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • How and why does music become linked to lifetime memories?
  • How do music and personal memories interact in shaping one’s identity and self-concept?
  • What role does music play in the maintenance and retrieval of memories?
  • How does music relate to notions of collective memory and cultural transmission?
  • What role do cultural practices play in shaping the link between music and memories?
  • Can music be an effective cue for autobiographical memories in populations in which memory function has otherwise been compromised?

Special Collection in Music & Science

In conjunction with the Music & Lifetime Memories conference and a symposium on music-evoked autobiographical memories at SMPC this summer, we are now accepting paper submissions for a Special Collection on Music and Autobiographical Memory in the journal Music & Science (co-guest edited by Dr. Amy Belfi and Dr. Kelly Jakubowski). Paper submissions are now being accepted here, until 31 December 2019.

Any authors working on the topic of music and autobiographical memory from a scientific perspective are welcome to submit to the Special Collection (even if you are not presenting at the conference). Please note that Article Processing Charges do not apply for articles submitted by 31 December 2019 (articles accepted for publication will be published free of charge).

Important Dates

Abstract submission deadline: 15 May 2019

Notification of acceptance by:  30 June 2019

Registration deadline (presenters): 15 August 2019

Revised abstract submission deadline (presenters): 15 August 2019

Registration deadline (general audience): 30 September 2019

Music and Lifetime Memories Conference: Friday 1st November – Saturday 2nd November, 2019

Organising Committee

Dr. Kelly Jakubowski, Dr. Liila Taruffi, Ms. Anita Ghosh

Event Details

Location: Lindisfarne Centre, Durham University, Durham, UK

Contact Email (Abstract Submissions and General Queries): music.memories2019@gmail.com

No registration fee will be charged for this event, to encourage participation from researchers of all backgrounds and career stages.

This event is funded by the Leverhulme Trust and hosted in association with SEMPRE.