Microsoft is about to enter the Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) space. According to Music Business Worldwide, the company launching a new technology that plans to shift how people consume music. It’s also created software that raps with very little programming or input from humans.
Microsoft has an entire research division dedicated to A.I. called Muzic, which was established in 2019. Muzic is described as a “project on A.I. music that empowers music understanding and generation with deep learning and artificial intelligence.”
The research comes out of the company’s The Deep and Reinforcement Learning Group at Microsoft Research Asia (MSR Asia) in Beijing and Shanghai.
MSR Asia was actually set up in 1998 and “conducts basic and applied research in areas central to Microsoft’s long-term strategy and future computing vision”. Muzic researchers have come up with an A.I.-powered “rap generator” called DeepRapper.
A memo detailing the text-based model claims, “DeepRapper is the first [A.I.] system to generate rap with both rhymes and rhythms. Both objective and subjective evaluations demonstrate that DeepRapper generates creative and high-quality raps.”
It continues, “Previous works for rap generation focused on rhyming lyrics but ignored rhythmic beats, which are important for rap performance. In this paper, we develop DeepRapper, a Transformer-based rap generation system that can model both rhymes and rhythms.”
For now, there is “no available rap dataset with rhythmic beats” and so the division has developed “a data mining pipeline to collect a large scale rap dataset, which includes a large number of rap songs with aligned lyrics and rhythmic beats.”
Those Microsoft engineers and researchers, in the United States and overseas, are working in the A.I. space and looking at various subjects within the technology like A.I.-powered text-to-music generation, lyric generation, Lyric-to-Melody Generation and songwriting. Microsoft released the code for DeepRapper on GitHub, which can be found here.