NLP and Phonetic Analysis in Music

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The article below is a quick review of what I believe is the most interesting and innovative technology in the music industry right now – the use of Natural Language Processing in music, or NLP. This technology can be applied to music production as well as to the recording process.

One of the challenges in using Natural Language Processing in music is, of course, finding the right tools to accomplish this goal. Some of the tools available today fall short of what is needed, while others are too sophisticated and expensive to be practical for beginning artists. It can be very difficult to determine which tool is best for each musician.

I have found one way to decide which is best for each musician is to understand the requirements of their projects first. In other words, a musician needs to know exactly what it is they need to accomplish, or what they want to achieve from the application of NLP in music production.

Here is my first example of what I am talking about. For example, I would want to use Natural Language Processing in music production to determine what a song should sound like based on what the artist wants.

If the artist wants their album’s title to be “The Bags of Fayre” (with a capital “B”), then that artist should tell AI(Artificial Intelligence) how the name is pronounced (and in which language) when the album is finished. A good singer or musician & a good NLP practitioner would be able to do this quickly and easily through NLP.

But, if the artist wants the album to be called “The Bags of Fayre” in either English or French, then we would need to get into some more advanced levels of NLP in music production. However, I would still use the NLP (Natural Language Processing) tools to determine what the artist’s desired phonemes should sound like. One of the tools I use to complete this process is a special type of NLP (Natural Language Processing) called Phonetic Analysis. Phonetic Analysis is an analysis of the phonemes in a song.

What does this mean? The better your ability to determine the phonemes in a song, the better your ability to turn the music into the desired sound!

There are many different types of Phonetic Analysis tools, and I am sure we all have our favorites. For me, I use Trillian, which is the best and most affordable.

Here is an example of what it would look like when the Phonetic Analysis tool is in use on a track that has three distinct, yet common phonemes: ago, and e.

The output from the Phonetic Analysis tool is displayed in real-time, so you can see what it sounds like in the track. This is a great way to determine what a singer or musician should sing or play!


With this information, I can see exactly what the Phonetic Analysis system will do, and I can use this to tailor the NLP tools to the artist. So, that’s my brief overview of the way NLP in music can be used in music production


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