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Hugo Gonçalo Oliveira

Abstract

Tra-la-Lyrics is a system that generates song lyrics automatically. In its original version, the main focus was to produce text where stresses matched the rhythm of given melodies. There were no concerns on whether the text made sense or if the selected words shared some kind of semantic association. In this article, we describe the development of a new version of Tra-la-Lyrics, where text is generated on a semantic domain, defined by one or more seed words. This effort involved the integration of the original rhythm module of Tra-la-Lyrics in PoeTryMe, a generic platform that generates poetry with semantically coherent sentences. To measure our progress, the rhythm, the rhymes, and the semantic coherence in lyrics produced by the original Tra-la-Lyrics were analysed and compared with lyrics produced by the new instantiation of this system, dubbed Tra-la-Lyrics 2.0. The analysis showed that, in the lyrics by the new system, words have higher semantic association among them and with the given seeds, while the rhythm is still matched and rhymes are present. The previous analysis was complemented with a crowdsourced evaluation, where contributors answered a survey about relevant features of lyrics produced by the previous and the current versions of Tra-la-Lyrics. Though tight, the survey results confirmed the improvements of the lyrics by Tra-la-Lyrics 2.0.