Honors Theses


Samuel N. Dorf, Ph.D.



Publication Date


Document Type

Honors Thesis


In the music therapy literature, there is a distinct lack of research on clinical song analysis. Analyzing songs can be beneficial for music therapists when choosing songs to use in a session, when discussing songs with a client, and when arranging songs to play with or for clients. In this thesis, I start to bridge the fields of music therapy, music theory, and musicology to create a language of analysis upon which music therapists can draw for clinical song analysis. I focus first on foundational concepts such as timbre, style, and form, which I explain through the analysis of four different covers of the song “I’ll Fly Away.” Then, I conduct an in-depth study on the topics of persona theory and music and disability studies, including literature reviews and example analyses. I conclude by proposing pedagogical and research implications of this thesis in the fields of music therapy, music theory, and musicology.

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Undergraduate research


Music | Musicology | Music Therapy