Music mashups blend elements from two or more songs. They are extremely popular among both composers and listeners since they carry the emotional power of the original songs, plus delightful new surprises. A few automated systems have appeared on the mashup scene, but the results are often heavy-handed and muddy, since they usually combine everything from both songs, and therefore lack the nuance and clarity of hand-crafted mashups by professional composers. We propose a mashup system “Rhythm Fusion” that allows users to swap the drum track from one song into another. We use a beat tracking algorithm to synchronize and align the songs. In our preliminary subjective tests, 10 songs were used to generate 90 combinations. Of these, 27% of the variations were rated more musically satisfying than the original. These results indicate that drum swapping alone has much promise for music mashups, and will guide our future work on swap-ping both drums and bass stems from different songs in automated music mashups, and eventually other components as well.

This content is only available via PDF.