Tag Archives: flamenco

Paper on melodic similarity in flamenco now online

Our paper on melodic similarity is finally online! The paper is titled

Melodic Contour and Mid-Level Global Features Applied to the Analysis of Flamenco Cantes

This work focuses on the topic of melodic characterization and similarity in a specific musical repertoire: a cappella flamenco singing, more specifically in debla and martinete styles. We propose the combination of manual and automatic description. First, we use a state-of-the-art automatic transcription method to account for general melodic similarity from music recordings. Second, we define a specific set of representative mid-level melodic features, which are manually labelled by flamenco experts. Both approaches are then contrasted and combined into a global similarity measure. This similarity measure is assessed by inspecting the clusters obtained through phylogenetic algorithms and by relating similarity to categorization in terms of style. Finally, we discuss the advantage of combining automatic and expert annotations as well as the need to include repertoire-specific descriptions for meaningful melodic characterization in traditional music collections.

This is the result of a joint work of the COFLA group, where I am contributing with tecnologies for the automatic transcription and melody description of music recordings.

This is an example on how we compare flamenco tonás using melodic similarity and phylogenetic trees:

nnmr_a_1174717_f0007_b

And this is a video example of the type of styles we analyze in this paper, done by Nadine Kroher based on her work at the MTG:

You can read the full paper online:

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09298215.2016.1174717

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CANTE: Open Algorithm, Code & Data for the Automatic Transcription of Flamenco Singing

Over the last months, several journal publications related to our research on flamenco & technology are finally online.

One of them is a work with my former PhD student, Nadine Kroher (who now moved to Universidad de Sevilla), on the automatic transcription of flamenco singing. Flamenco singing is really challenging in terms of computational modelling, given its ornamented character and variety, and we have designed a system for its automatic transcription, focusing on polyphonic recordings.

flamencoTranscriptionKroherGomez

The proposed system outperforms state of the art singing transcription systems with respect to voicing accuracy, onset detection, and overall performance when evaluated on flamenco singing datasets. We hope it think will be a contribution not only to flamenco research but to other singing styles.

You can read about our algorithm at the paper we published at IEEE TASP, where we present the method, strategies for evaluation and comparison with state of the art approaches. You can not only read, but actually try it, as we published an open source software for the algorithm, plus a music dataset for its comparative evaluation, cante2midi (I will talk about flamenco corpus in another post). All of this to foster research reproducibility and motivate people to work on flamenco music.

¡Olé!

 

 

 

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Music Information Retrieval & Flamenco: Experiment on note segmentation

Current experiment (updated October 2015)

We are running an experiment on note segmentation in flamenco, in order to understand the mechanisms behind manual transcriptions and improve our automatic transcription methods.

You can help by doing this exercise where you will have to segment 10 short flamenco excerpts into notes (it requires less than 1 hour of your time), and you will have the chance to listen in detail to some flamenco singing.

About

My current research in music information retrieval also addresses flamenco music, specially flamenco singing. I am interested to understand and model with computing tools the way humans transcribe flamenco music in order to generate automatic transcriptions of flamenco performances. Transcriptions are useful for musical analysis in terms of scale, patterns and style. More info on the context of my research can be found at the COFLA web site.

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Forum on transcription in the journal “Twentieth-Century Music”

I contributed by means of an enriching interview to the “Forum on Transcription”, authored by Jason Stanyek (University of Oxford) in the journal Twentieth-Century MusicAs stated on the web site, this journal disseminates research on all aspects of music in the long twentieth century to a broad readership. Emphasis is placed upon the presentation of the full spectrum of scholarly insight, with the goal of fostering exchange and debate between disciplinary fields.

I share an interesting conversation about transcription with Parag Chordia. In this conversation with Jason we discussed about the challenges and potential of audio analysis tools for computer-assisted transcription and description of music recordings. I gave some examples on my work on the transcription of flamenco singing that is being carried out within the COFLA project. 

You can find the results of the forum and the rest of a very impressive special issue on transcription on the web.

 

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TONAS: a new dataset of flamenco a cappella sung melodies with corresponding manual transcriptions

 

Some weeks ago we announced the release of a new dataset of flamenco singing: TONAS

The dataset includes 72 sung excerpts representative of three a cappella flamenco singing styles, i.e. Tonás (Debla and two variants of Martinete), together with manually corrected fundamental frequency and note transcriptions.

This collection was built by the COFLA team in the context of our research project for melodic transcription, similarity and style classification in flamenco music.

Further information about the music collection, how the samples were transcribed and by who, is available on the dataset website, where you can of course download the audio, metadata and transcription files.

We hope that this collection will be useful, whether for automatic transcription of the singing voice or any other research topic (e.g. pitch estimation, onset detection, melodic similarity, singer identification, style classification), and we hope this dataset will increase the interest of our scientific community on the particular challenges of flamenco singing.

For the moment we got quite a number of downloads for different purposes: research on music transcription, onset detection, folk music, personal study of singing techniques, and even for curiosity! 🙂

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ISMIR 2012

Last week I attended my favorite conference, the International Society of Music Information Retrieval Conference. It took place in Porto, Portugal. I gave a presentation on our flamenco project. If you are interested, these are the slides.

It was a very intense conference, where I attended very nice presentations and I got many great ideas for future research. I specially enjoyed the last-minute demo session, which was something different to what I am used to.

Now, back to work!

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III Interdisciplinary Conference in Flamenco Research – INFLA and II International Workshop on Folk Music Analysis – FMA

Some news about the INFLA-FMA event I am co-organizing!

INFLA-FMA logo

INFLA-FMA logo

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III INterdisciplinary Conference in FLAmenco Research (INFLA 2012) and II International Workhop of Folk Music Analysis (FMA 2012)

I am co-organizing an international scientific event in my city, Seville, which is in fact, the most wonderful event I can think of at the moment: flamenco, folk music, music computing, april, Sevilla!

You can find at the web all the needed information. I am very happy as I think it will be an amazing event and an oportunity for everyone to come to the Feria de Sevilla this year 🙂

I hope many people will join.

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Multimodality, Music Processing and Flamenco Research

This week, I am attending a focused seminar in Multimodal Music Processing.  The organizers managed to gather together an amazing group of researchers from different areas in music technology. We are trying to discuss on the challenges related to the combination of different modalities of information into music processing systems.

What do we mean by multi-modality?

A “Modality” can be defined as “any of the various types of sensation, such as vision or hearing” or even “any of the five senses”. How to take advantage of information from our five senses into music processing systems? If we also consider the “context” and the “user” as an information source, we then have a huge amount of information to be efficiently combined.

This is mainly the challenge of all of the area, dealing and combining data and information for a particular task.

I tried to apply multimodality to my current project in flamenco music and I realized we are facing a multi-modal, multi-disciplinary and multi-cultural problem.

–       Multi-modal: we are dealing with the integration of different knowledge sources: music, expression, context, cultural information, anthropological data, listener judgments, text, image and movement.

–       Multi-disciplinary: each modality formalizes differently, so how to formalize knowledge from other disciplines into music processing systems: music content processing, knowledge discovery, musicology (flamenco scholars), cognition, anthropology and literature.

–       Multi-cultural: How to refine music processing systems to be significant to people from different musical backgrounds and cultures.

So I am gathering nice ideas at this seminar!

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