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Automatic Lyrics Display System for Live Music Performances

Citation Author(s):
Karan Vombatkere, Bochen Li
Submitted by:
Zhiyao Duan
Last updated:
31 July 2016 - 3:58pm
Document Type:
Research Manuscript
Document Year:
Karan Vombatkere, Bochen Li
Paper Code:


Live musical performances (e.g., choruses, concerts, and operas) often require the display of lyrics for the convenience of the audience. This requires following the performance and controlling the lyrics display in real time. In practice, this is usually controlled by a staff member of the concert who has been very familiar with the performance. In this paper, we present our effort in implementing a computational system to automate this real-time lyric display process using music following techniques. The idea is to use a real-time Dynamic Time Warping (DTW) algorithm to align the musical performance with a reference recording (e.g., a rehearsal recording or a cover song for the same piece) in real time, and display the lyrics that have been pre-aligned with the reference recording. In this paper, we present a Java implementation of this system on a PC using a multithread audio recording and processing framework and a graphical user interface. Preliminary results show that the system can successfully deal with different performance speed and display lyrics appropriately.

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