My name is Samuel Mehr.

coverage in Nature // Boston Symphony video with Ellen Winner on 'Mozart Effect'

I'm a graduate student at Harvard University, where I investigate the origins and functions of music. Put another way, I study what music is, how music works, and where music comes from.

I use a variety of methods from cognitive science, evolutionary psychology, anthropology, and education, including behavioral experiments with infants and their parents, ethnographic cross-cultural studies, large-scale surveys of adults and adolescents, and studies of people with rare genetic conditions.

My advisors are Howard Gardner and Liz Spelke; other faculty with whom I work include Steve Pinker, Max Krasnow, and David Haig. My main affiliations are the Lab for Developmental Studies and the Evolutionary Psychology Lab, both in the Department of Psychology.

Outside of academia you can hear me perform on reeds at many venues including Boston’s Wang Theatre and Maine's Ogunquit Playhouse. I am an alumnus of the Eastman School of Music, grew up on one side of Cambridge (in Riverside), and now live on the other side (in Area 11). 
For more on my background, you can read this profile.

If you're looking for research experience in 
cognitive science & music, please contact me. 
My collaborators and I are always interested in hearing from RA candidates!

This is a picture of me. Jason took it.
This is a picture of my brain. Anna and Alek took it.