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Audio Synthesis, what’s next? – Mellotron

Audio Synthesis, what’s next? – Mellotron

Expressive voice synthesis with rhythm and pitch transfer. Mellotron managed to let a person sing, without ever recording his/her voice performing any song. Interested? Here is more...

Some time ago we suggested to pay a visit to the virtual ICASSP 2020 conference. For those of you who couldn’t make it, here’s a short recap of one of the most exiting research papers we stumbled upon. Please give a warm welcome to Mr. Mellotron!

Tacotron

If you are interested in deepfakes, you probably heard of the impressive audio deepfakes created by the Tacotron model, and by its rightful successor Tacotron 2. The goal of both models is to turn an input text into a complex time-frequency matrix which is then translated into an audio file. The birth of “modern” text-to-speech applications, which led to audio deepfakes, is largely due to these two papers.

Singing

Both Tacotron and Tacotron 2 were able to learn how a voice sounded and could reproduce speech from text with that very voice. This ability, by itself, was already remarkable. At ICASSP 2020 this year three researchers from NVIDIA went a step further: They managed to let a person sing without ever recording his/her voice performing any song. The Mellotron neural network is able to vary the pace and the intonation of any (singing or speaking) voice according to the user input, leaving infinite possibilities of variations and expressiveness.

Before & After

Before Mellotron, reproducing a lively and expressive voice required gathering plenty of audio material of a speaker and exploring all possible variations of the voice. After Mellotron much less material is going to be needed, “only” enough to learn a person’s voice timbre. That person being happy, angry or sad is up to the network to decide. A couple of years ago this would have been impossible. Thanks to this research, it just became reality.

If you are interested in what this sounds like, do not miss out on the audio examples produced by Mellotron, and have a look at the original paper:

Happy Digging and keep an eye on our future “Audio Synthesis: What’s next?” posts!

 Don’t forget: be active and responsible in your community – and stay healthy!

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ICASSP 2020 International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing

ICASSP 2020 International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing

Here is what we think are the most relevant upcoming audio-related conferences. And which sessions you should attend at the ICASSP 2020.

To keep up-to-date with the latest on audio-technology for our software development, we follow other researchers studies and we usually visit many conferences. Sadly, this time, we cannot attend them in person. Nevertheless, we can visit them virtually, together with you. Here is what we think are the most relevant upcoming audio-related conferences:

Let’s take a more detailed look at,

ICASSP 2020 International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing

Date: 04th – 8th of May, 2020
Location: https://2020.ieeeicassp.org/program/schedule/live-schedule/

This is a list of panels we recommend during the ICASSP 2020:

Date: Tuesday 05th of May 2020

  • Opening Ceremony (9:30 – 10:00h)
  • Plenary by Yoshua Bengio on “Deep Representation Learning” (15:00 – 16:00h)
    • Note: may be pretty technical, for deep learning enthusiastic
    • Note: He’s one of the fathers of deep learning

Date: Wednesday 06th of May 2020

Date: Thursday 07th of May 2020

We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

The Digger project aims:

  • to develop a video and audio verification toolkit, helping journalists and other investigators to analyse audiovisual content, in order to be able to detect video manipulations using a variety of tools and techniques.
  • to develop a community of people from different backgrounds interested in the use of video and audio forensics for the detection of deepfake content.

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Audio Synthesis, what’s next? – Mellotron

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Expressive voice synthesis with rhythm and pitch transfer. Mellotron managed to let a person sing, without ever recording his/her voice performing any song. Interested? Here is more…