Text-to-music generation models are now capable of generating high-quality music audio in broad styles. However, text control is primarily suitable for the manipulation of global musical attributes like genre, mood, and tempo, and is less suitable for precise control over time-varying attributes such as the positions of beats in time or the changing dynamics of the music. We propose Music ControlNet, a diffusion-based music generation model that offers multiple precise, time-varying controls over generated audio. To imbue text-to-music models with time-varying control, we propose an approach analogous to pixel-wise control of the image-domain ControlNet method. Specifically, we extract controls from training audio yielding paired data, and fine-tune a diffusion-based conditional generative model over audio spectrograms given melody, dynamics, and rhythm controls. While the image-domain Uni-ControlNet method already allows generation with any subset of controls, we devise a new strategy to allow creators to input controls that are only partially specified in time. We evaluate both on controls extracted from audio and controls we expect creators to provide, demonstrating that we can generate realistic music that corresponds to control inputs in both settings. While few comparable music generation models exist, we benchmark against MusicGen, a recent model that accepts text and melody input, and show that our model generates music that is 49% more faithful to input melodies despite having 35x fewer parameters, training on 11x less data, and enabling two additional forms of time-varying control. Sound examples can be found at https://MusicControlNet.github.io/web/.
* 11 pages, 4 figure, 5 tables, Submitted to IEEE/ACM Transactions on
Audio, Speech, and Language Processing (TASLP)
Automated audio captioning (AAC) aims to generate informative descriptions for various sounds from nature and/or human activities. In recent years, AAC has quickly attracted research interest, with state-of-the-art systems now relying on a sequence-to-sequence (seq2seq) backbone powered by strong models such as Transformers. Following the macro-trend of applied machine learning research, in this work, we strive to improve the performance of seq2seq AAC models by extensively leveraging pretrained models and large language models (LLMs). Specifically, we utilize BEATs to extract fine-grained audio features. Then, we employ Instructor LLM to fetch text embeddings of captions, and infuse their language-modality knowledge into BEATs audio features via an auxiliary InfoNCE loss function. Moreover, we propose a novel data augmentation method that uses ChatGPT to produce caption mix-ups (i.e., grammatical and compact combinations of two captions) which, together with the corresponding audio mixtures, increase not only the amount but also the complexity and diversity of training data. During inference, we propose to employ nucleus sampling and a hybrid reranking algorithm, which has not been explored in AAC research. Combining our efforts, our model achieves a new state-of-the-art 32.6 SPIDEr-FL score on the Clotho evaluation split, and wins the 2023 DCASE AAC challenge.
* Preprint, under review at ICASSP 2024. Winner of the DCASE 2023
Challenge Task 6A: Automated Audio Captioning (AAC)
PhotoBook is a collaborative dialogue game where two players receive private, partially-overlapping sets of images and resolve which images they have in common. It presents machines with a great challenge to learn how people build common ground around multimodal context to communicate effectively. Methods developed in the literature, however, cannot be deployed to real gameplay since they only tackle some subtasks of the game, and they require additional reference chains inputs, whose extraction process is imperfect. Therefore, we propose a reference chain-free listener model that directly addresses the game's predictive task, i.e., deciding whether an image is shared with partner. Our DeBERTa-based listener model reads the full dialogue, and utilizes CLIPScore features to assess utterance-image relevance. We achieve >77% accuracy on unseen sets of images/game themes, outperforming baseline by >17 points.
* Accepted to ACL 2023 main conference (short paper)
Spoken Language Understanding (SLU) is a critical speech recognition application and is often deployed on edge devices. Consequently, on-device processing plays a significant role in the practical implementation of SLU. This paper focuses on the end-to-end (E2E) SLU model due to its small latency property, unlike a cascade system, and aims to minimize the computational cost. We reduce the model size by applying tensor decomposition to the Conformer and E-Branchformer architectures used in our E2E SLU models. We propose to apply singular value decomposition to linear layers and the Tucker decomposition to convolution layers, respectively. We also compare COMP/PARFAC decomposition and Tensor-Train decomposition to the Tucker decomposition. Since the E2E model is represented by a single neural network, our tensor decomposition can flexibly control the number of parameters without changing feature dimensions. On the STOP dataset, we achieved 70.9% exact match accuracy under the tight constraint of only 15 million parameters.
This paper describes our system for the low-resource domain adaptation track (Track 3) in Spoken Language Understanding Grand Challenge, which is a part of ICASSP Signal Processing Grand Challenge 2023. In the track, we adopt a pipeline approach of ASR and NLU. For ASR, we fine-tune Whisper for each domain with upsampling. For NLU, we fine-tune BART on all the Track3 data and then on low-resource domain data. We apply masked LM (MLM) -based data augmentation, where some of input tokens and corresponding target labels are replaced using MLM. We also apply a retrieval-based approach, where model input is augmented with similar training samples. As a result, we achieved exact match (EM) accuracy 63.3/75.0 (average: 69.15) for reminder/weather domain, and won the 1st place at the challenge.
Recently there have been efforts to introduce new benchmark tasks for spoken language understanding (SLU), like semantic parsing. In this paper, we describe our proposed spoken semantic parsing system for the quality track (Track 1) in Spoken Language Understanding Grand Challenge which is part of ICASSP Signal Processing Grand Challenge 2023. We experiment with both end-to-end and pipeline systems for this task. Strong automatic speech recognition (ASR) models like Whisper and pretrained Language models (LM) like BART are utilized inside our SLU framework to boost performance. We also investigate the output level combination of various models to get an exact match accuracy of 80.8, which won the 1st place at the challenge.
* First Place in Track 1 of STOP Challenge, which is part of ICASSP
Signal Processing Grand Challenge 2023
Even with strong sequence models like Transformers, generating expressive piano performances with long-range musical structures remains challenging. Meanwhile, methods to compose well-structured melodies or lead sheets (melody + chords), i.e., simpler forms of music, gained more success. Observing the above, we devise a two-stage Transformer-based framework that Composes a lead sheet first, and then Embellishes it with accompaniment and expressive touches. Such a factorization also enables pretraining on non-piano data. Our objective and subjective experiments show that Compose & Embellish shrinks the gap in structureness between a current state of the art and real performances by half, and improves other musical aspects such as richness and coherence as well.
Attention-based Transformer models have been increasingly employed for automatic music generation. To condition the generation process of such a model with a user-specified sequence, a popular approach is to take that conditioning sequence as a priming sequence and ask a Transformer decoder to generate a continuation. However, this prompt-based conditioning cannot guarantee that the conditioning sequence would develop or even simply repeat itself in the generated continuation. In this paper, we propose an alternative conditioning approach, called theme-based conditioning, that explicitly trains the Transformer to treat the conditioning sequence as a thematic material that has to manifest itself multiple times in its generation result. This is achieved with two main technical contributions. First, we propose a deep learning-based approach that uses contrastive representation learning and clustering to automatically retrieve thematic materials from music pieces in the training data. Second, we propose a novel gated parallel attention module to be used in a sequence-to-sequence (seq2seq) encoder/decoder architecture to more effectively account for a given conditioning thematic material in the generation process of the Transformer decoder. We report on objective and subjective evaluations of variants of the proposed Theme Transformer and the conventional prompt-based baseline, showing that our best model can generate, to some extent, polyphonic pop piano music with repetition and plausible variations of a given condition.