Understanding the statistical properties of music has become relevant to an increasing number of real-world applications over the last two decades. Although a majority of research has focused on low-level, signal-processing based features of music and their corresponding statistics, appropriately chosen higher-level features of music, such as the melody line, can supplement and sometimes even outperform low-level features of music in classification tasks. This paper explores the statistics of higher-order features of the musical works of three early Classical composers from two different but closely related musical periods: Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (1525-1594) from the Renaissance period, Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643), who wrote in the period transitioning from Renaissance to Baroque, and Joann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750), from the Baroque period. We analysed chord frequency distribution and mapped out co-occurrences between chords over different time-window lengths, in order to determine whether chord co-occurrence statistics change based on composer. We furthermore performed both clustering and classification analyses on the chord co-occurrences for all three composers.




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