Transcription demonstrations

Demonstrations I: transcription of music from CDs

Note: More recent transcription demonstrations, using the system developed together with Matti Ryynänen, are here.

The transcription examples below are produced by an automatic transcription system, which gets only the acoustic musical signal as input (with no side-information) and produces a musical notation for the sounds that make up the piece (i.e., a MIDI-like representation). Please notice, that the overall transcription system has not yet been optimized at all. It is simply:

Musical knowledge or rules have not been utilized at all. The multipitch estimator does not even utilize the context - it just looks at each segment of the input signal at a time and finds the musical notes in it.

Typical problems in the transcription are illustrated by the last few examples in the table. Such problems are still very common in the automatic transcription of real-world music.

Original Transcribed, then resynthesized Comments
Chopin: Nocturne (piano) chopin_nocturne1_t See above.
Larrissey: Mist on the mountain (folk) Transcription No drums, easy instrument.
Zucchero: Senza una donna (pop) Transcription Easy pop
Taylor: Lady my whole world is you (pop) Transcription -
Saint-Saens: Sarabande op. 93 (classical) Transcription -
Abba: Waterloo (pop) waterlooT9 Accompaniment pops up from the background
Abba: Dancing Queen (pop) dancing_queenT9 -
Beethoven: 5th Symphony, part III (classical) beethoven_5thT9 -
Edvard Grieg: Zur Johannesnacht (classical) zur_johannisnachtT9 Harmonically rich
Claudio Roditi: Rua Dona Margarida (jazz/easy) rua_dona_margaridaT9 -
Hilton Ruiz: Something Grand (jazz) something_gT9 -
Kool and the Gang: Funky stuff (funk) Transcription Problem: difficult piece
The Police: Its allright for you (rock) Transcription Problem: difficult genre
Stevie Wonder: Master Blaster (pop) master_blasterT9 Problem: short notes
Stevie Wonder: You Are the Sunshine of My Life (pop) you_are_the_sunshine_of_my_lifeT9 Problem: difficult instrument to transcribe
Glen Miller: Over the Rainbow (big band) over_the_rainbowT6 Problem: old recording, low quality

Demonstrations II: transcription of synthesized MIDI

Accurate and realistic evaluation of a transcription system is best achieved by transcribing synthesized MIDI songs. In this case, the exact reference score is readily available. Also, high-quality MIDI songs are complex enough to simulate the real case.

Transcription of synthesized MIDI gives somewhat optimistic transcription results. It is more difficult to transcribe music from CDs. However, MIDI songs allow much more accurate comparison between the reference and the transcription and this is more important. Pure listening of transcription results is not sufficiently informative.

Below, 20 randomly selected MIDI pieces and their transcription results are shown (I excluded 3-4 pieces due to bad transcription. Considering it now it is very pity because the selection is no more completely random. On the other hand, preparing a new and completely random set of transcriptions is too tedious, no time for such now.)

Again, the transcriber gets only the acoustic musical signal as input. Musical meter estimation was used for temporal segmentation, which improves the system accuracy compared to using one-by-one onset detection. No musical knowledge or the context was utilized. Each temporal segment was transcribed independently using a multiple-F0 estimator.

Category Piece Comment
Piano examples Georgia No major problems. Many missed notes, though.
Opus 1 Poor results. Difficulties: played in the high register, drums.
Blue Moon Good transcription.
Israel Poor results. Difficulty: loud snare drumming.
Moaning Drums cause no problem.
No More Difficulty: staccato (short notes).
Skylark Relatively easy case.
Swing Cafe Drums cause no problem. The rhythm gets blurred.
Wishstar Rich polyphony. Some notes missed, but generally quite good job.
Pop music examples Mamma Mia Ok.
You Are the Sunshine... Not very successful. High-pitched strings.
Beat It Ok.
Liberian Girl
Get Back Snare drumming, transcription ok.
I Shot the Sheriff Quite successful.
Oye Como Va Recognizable, no more.
Classical examples Bach RC 13 Ok.
Bach RC 21 Ok.
Jesu J1 Ok.
Beethoven 9c Ok.

More? Check the DAFx2000 demonstrations page.

Last modified: Tue Nov 9 13:01:15 EET 2004 - Anssi Klapuri , klap @ cs tut fi