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"music generation": models, code, and papers

Enabling Factorized Piano Music Modeling and Generation with the MAESTRO Dataset

Oct 30, 2018
Curtis Hawthorne, Andriy Stasyuk, Adam Roberts, Ian Simon, Cheng-Zhi Anna Huang, Sander Dieleman, Erich Elsen, Jesse Engel, Douglas Eck

Generating musical audio directly with neural networks is notoriously difficult because it requires coherently modeling structure at many different timescales. Fortunately, most music is also highly structured and can be represented as discrete note events played on musical instruments. Herein, we show that by using notes as an intermediate representation, we can train a suite of models capable of transcribing, composing, and synthesizing audio waveforms with coherent musical structure on timescales spanning six orders of magnitude (~0.1 ms to ~100 s), a process we call Wave2Midi2Wave. This large advance in the state of the art is enabled by our release of the new MAESTRO (MIDI and Audio Edited for Synchronous TRacks and Organization) dataset, composed of over 172 hours of virtuosic piano performances captured with fine alignment (~3 ms) between note labels and audio waveforms. The networks and the dataset together present a promising approach toward creating new expressive and interpretable neural models of music.

* Examples available at 
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DeepDrum: An Adaptive Conditional Neural Network

Sep 17, 2018
Dimos Makris, Maximos Kaliakatsos-Papakostas, Katia Lida Kermanidis

Considering music as a sequence of events with multiple complex dependencies, the Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) architecture has proven very efficient in learning and reproducing musical styles. However, the generation of rhythms requires additional information regarding musical structure and accompanying instruments. In this paper we present DeepDrum, an adaptive Neural Network capable of generating drum rhythms under constraints imposed by Feed-Forward (Conditional) Layers which contain musical parameters along with given instrumentation information (e.g. bass and guitar notes). Results on generated drum sequences are presented indicating that DeepDrum is effective in producing rhythms that resemble the learned style, while at the same time conforming to given constraints that were unknown during the training process.

* 2018 Joint Workshop on Machine Learning for Music. The Federated Artificial Intelligence Meeting (FAIM), a joint workshop program of ICML, IJCAI/ECAI, and AAMAS 
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Encoding Musical Style with Transformer Autoencoders

Dec 10, 2019
Kristy Choi, Curtis Hawthorne, Ian Simon, Monica Dinculescu, Jesse Engel

We consider the problem of learning high-level controls over the global structure of sequence generation, particularly in the context of symbolic music generation with complex language models. In this work, we present the Transformer autoencoder, which aggregates encodings of the input data across time to obtain a global representation of style from a given performance. We show it is possible to combine this global embedding with other temporally distributed embeddings, enabling improved control over the separate aspects of performance style and and melody. Empirically, we demonstrate the effectiveness of our method on a variety of music generation tasks on the MAESTRO dataset and a YouTube dataset with 10,000+ hours of piano performances, where we achieve improvements in terms of log-likelihood and mean listening scores as compared to relevant baselines.

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Music2Dance: Music-driven Dance Generation using WaveNet

Feb 02, 2020
Wenlin Zhuang, Congyi Wang, Siyu Xia, Jinxiang Chai, Yangang Wang

In this paper, we propose a novel system, named as Music2Dance, for addressing the problem of fully automatic music and choreography. Our key idea is to shift the WaveNet, which is originally designed for speech generation, to the human motion synthesis. To balance the big differences between these two tasks, we propose a novel network structure. Typically, being regarded as the local condition for our network, the music features are first extracted by considering the characteristics of rhythms and melody. In addition, the types of dance are then designed as the global condition for the network. Both of the two conditions are utilized to stabilize the network training. Beyond the network architecture, another main challenge is the lack of data. In order to further tackle the obstacle, we have captured the synchronized music-dance pairs by professional dancers, and thus build a high-quality music-dance pair dataset. Experiments have demonstrated the performance of the proposed system and the proposed method can achieve the state-of-the-art results.

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AI Song Contest: Human-AI Co-Creation in Songwriting

Oct 12, 2020
Cheng-Zhi Anna Huang, Hendrik Vincent Koops, Ed Newton-Rex, Monica Dinculescu, Carrie J. Cai

Machine learning is challenging the way we make music. Although research in deep generative models has dramatically improved the capability and fluency of music models, recent work has shown that it can be challenging for humans to partner with this new class of algorithms. In this paper, we present findings on what 13 musician/developer teams, a total of 61 users, needed when co-creating a song with AI, the challenges they faced, and how they leveraged and repurposed existing characteristics of AI to overcome some of these challenges. Many teams adopted modular approaches, such as independently running multiple smaller models that align with the musical building blocks of a song, before re-combining their results. As ML models are not easily steerable, teams also generated massive numbers of samples and curated them post-hoc, or used a range of strategies to direct the generation, or algorithmically ranked the samples. Ultimately, teams not only had to manage the "flare and focus" aspects of the creative process, but also juggle them with a parallel process of exploring and curating multiple ML models and outputs. These findings reflect a need to design machine learning-powered music interfaces that are more decomposable, steerable, interpretable, and adaptive, which in return will enable artists to more effectively explore how AI can extend their personal expression.

* ISMIR 2020 
* 6 pages + 3 pages of references 
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Music FaderNets: Controllable Music Generation Based On High-Level Features via Low-Level Feature Modelling

Jul 29, 2020
Hao Hao Tan, Dorien Herremans

High-level musical qualities (such as emotion) are often abstract, subjective, and hard to quantify. Given these difficulties, it is not easy to learn good feature representations with supervised learning techniques, either because of the insufficiency of labels, or the subjectiveness (and hence large variance) in human-annotated labels. In this paper, we present a framework that can learn high-level feature representations with a limited amount of data, by first modelling their corresponding quantifiable low-level attributes. We refer to our proposed framework as Music FaderNets, which is inspired by the fact that low-level attributes can be continuously manipulated by separate "sliding faders" through feature disentanglement and latent regularization techniques. High-level features are then inferred from the low-level representations through semi-supervised clustering using Gaussian Mixture Variational Autoencoders (GM-VAEs). Using arousal as an example of a high-level feature, we show that the "faders" of our model are disentangled and change linearly w.r.t. the modelled low-level attributes of the generated output music. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the model successfully learns the intrinsic relationship between arousal and its corresponding low-level attributes (rhythm and note density), with only 1% of the training set being labelled. Finally, using the learnt high-level feature representations, we explore the application of our framework in style transfer tasks across different arousal states. The effectiveness of this approach is verified through a subjective listening test.

* Proc. of 21st International Society of Music Information Retrieval Conference, ISMIR 2020 
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Is Disentanglement enough? On Latent Representations for Controllable Music Generation

Aug 01, 2021
Ashis Pati, Alexander Lerch

Improving controllability or the ability to manipulate one or more attributes of the generated data has become a topic of interest in the context of deep generative models of music. Recent attempts in this direction have relied on learning disentangled representations from data such that the underlying factors of variation are well separated. In this paper, we focus on the relationship between disentanglement and controllability by conducting a systematic study using different supervised disentanglement learning algorithms based on the Variational Auto-Encoder (VAE) architecture. Our experiments show that a high degree of disentanglement can be achieved by using different forms of supervision to train a strong discriminative encoder. However, in the absence of a strong generative decoder, disentanglement does not necessarily imply controllability. The structure of the latent space with respect to the VAE-decoder plays an important role in boosting the ability of a generative model to manipulate different attributes. To this end, we also propose methods and metrics to help evaluate the quality of a latent space with respect to the afforded degree of controllability.

* To be published in: Proceedings of 22nd International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference (ISMIR), Online, 2021 
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Latent Constraints: Learning to Generate Conditionally from Unconditional Generative Models

Dec 21, 2017
Jesse Engel, Matthew Hoffman, Adam Roberts

Deep generative neural networks have proven effective at both conditional and unconditional modeling of complex data distributions. Conditional generation enables interactive control, but creating new controls often requires expensive retraining. In this paper, we develop a method to condition generation without retraining the model. By post-hoc learning latent constraints, value functions that identify regions in latent space that generate outputs with desired attributes, we can conditionally sample from these regions with gradient-based optimization or amortized actor functions. Combining attribute constraints with a universal "realism" constraint, which enforces similarity to the data distribution, we generate realistic conditional images from an unconditional variational autoencoder. Further, using gradient-based optimization, we demonstrate identity-preserving transformations that make the minimal adjustment in latent space to modify the attributes of an image. Finally, with discrete sequences of musical notes, we demonstrate zero-shot conditional generation, learning latent constraints in the absence of labeled data or a differentiable reward function. Code with dedicated cloud instance has been made publicly available (

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A Contextual Latent Space Model: Subsequence Modulation in Melodic Sequence

Nov 23, 2021
Taketo Akama

Some generative models for sequences such as music and text allow us to edit only subsequences, given surrounding context sequences, which plays an important part in steering generation interactively. However, editing subsequences mainly involves randomly resampling subsequences from a possible generation space. We propose a contextual latent space model (CLSM) in order for users to be able to explore subsequence generation with a sense of direction in the generation space, e.g., interpolation, as well as exploring variations -- semantically similar possible subsequences. A context-informed prior and decoder constitute the generative model of CLSM, and a context position-informed encoder is the inference model. In experiments, we use a monophonic symbolic music dataset, demonstrating that our contextual latent space is smoother in interpolation than baselines, and the quality of generated samples is superior to baseline models. The generation examples are available online.

* 22nd International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference (ISMIR), 2021; 8 pages 
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The NES Music Database: A multi-instrumental dataset with expressive performance attributes

Jun 12, 2018
Chris Donahue, Huanru Henry Mao, Julian McAuley

Existing research on music generation focuses on composition, but often ignores the expressive performance characteristics required for plausible renditions of resultant pieces. In this paper, we introduce the Nintendo Entertainment System Music Database (NES-MDB), a large corpus allowing for separate examination of the tasks of composition and performance. NES-MDB contains thousands of multi-instrumental songs composed for playback by the compositionally-constrained NES audio synthesizer. For each song, the dataset contains a musical score for four instrument voices as well as expressive attributes for the dynamics and timbre of each voice. Unlike datasets comprised of General MIDI files, NES-MDB includes all of the information needed to render exact acoustic performances of the original compositions. Alongside the dataset, we provide a tool that renders generated compositions as NES-style audio by emulating the device's audio processor. Additionally, we establish baselines for the tasks of composition, which consists of learning the semantics of composing for the NES synthesizer, and performance, which involves finding a mapping between a composition and realistic expressive attributes.

* Published as a conference paper at ISMIR 2018 
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