A Data-driven Bayesian Approach to Automatic Rhythm Analysis of Indian Art Music

TitleA Data-driven Bayesian Approach to Automatic Rhythm Analysis of Indian Art Music
Publication TypePhD Thesis
Year of Publication2016
UniversityUniversitat Pompeu Fabra
AuthorsSrinivasamurthy, A.
AdvisorSerra, X.
Academic DepartmentDepartment of Information and Communication Technologies
Number of Pages332
Date Published11/2016
KeywordsAdditive meter, Automatic rhythm analysis, Bar pointer model, Bayesian model, beat tracking, Beijing opera, carnatic music, CompMusic, Data corpora, Downbeat tracking, Eurogenetic music, Graphical model, Hidden Markov model, hindustani music, Indian art music, Isochronicity, Language model, Machine learning, Meter, Meter analysis, Mridangam, Music Information Research, music information retrieval, Onomatopoeia, onset, onset detection, Onset patterns, Particle filter, Pattern discovery, Percussion patterns, rhythm, Rhythm patterns, Rhythm similarity, segmentation, Sequential Monte Carlo, signal processing, Spectral flux, Speech recognition, Syllabic percussion, Tabla, Tala recognition, Tempo tracking, Vocal percussion
Large and growing collections of a wide variety of music are now available on demand to music listeners, necessitating novel ways of automatically structuring these collections using different dimensions of music. Rhythm is one of the basic music dimensions and its automatic analysis, which aims to extract musically meaningful rhythm related information from music, is a core task in Music Information Research (MIR).
    Musical rhythm, similar to most musical dimensions, is culture-specific and hence its analysis requires culture-aware approaches. Indian art music is one of the major music traditions of the world and has complexities in rhythm that have not been addressed by the current state of the art in MIR, motivating us to choose it as the primary music tradition for study. Our intent is to address unexplored rhythm analysis problems in Indian art music to push the boundaries of the current MIR approaches by making them culture-aware and generalizable to other music traditions.
    The thesis aims to build data-driven signal processing and machine learning approaches for automatic analysis, description and discovery of rhythmic structures and patterns in audio music collections of Indian art music. After identifying challenges and opportunities, we present several relevant research tasks that open up the field of automatic rhythm analysis of Indian art music. Data-driven approaches require well curated data corpora for research and efforts towards creating such corpora and datasets are documented in detail. We then focus on the topics of meter analysis and percussion pattern discovery in Indian art music. 
    Meter analysis aims to align several hierarchical metrical events with an audio recording. Meter analysis tasks such as meter inference, meter tracking and informed meter tracking are formulated for Indian art music. Different Bayesian models that can explicitly incorporate higher level metrical structure information are evaluated for the tasks and novel extensions are proposed. The proposed methods overcome the limitations of existing approaches and their performance indicate the effectiveness of informed meter analysis. 
    Percussion in Indian art music uses onomatopoeic oral mnemonic syllables for the transmission of repertoire and technique, providing a language for percussion. We use these percussion syllables to define, represent and discover percussion patterns in audio recordings of percussion solos. We approach the problem of percussion pattern discovery using hidden Markov model based automatic transcription followed by an approximate string search using a data derived percussion pattern library. Preliminary experiments on Beijing opera percussion patterns, and on both tabla and mridangam solo recordings in Indian art music demonstrate the utility of percussion syllables, identifying further challenges to building practical discovery systems. 
    The technologies resulting from the research in the thesis are a part of the complete set of tools being developed within the CompMusic project for a better understanding and organization of Indian art music, aimed at providing an enriched experience with listening and discovery of music. The data and tools should also be relevant for data-driven musicological studies and other MIR tasks that can benefit from automatic rhythm analysis. 
Additional material: 
Companion webpage that contains data, code and other resources related to the thesis: http://compmusic.upf.edu/phd-thesis-ajay