Melex - The Melody Explorer
The Melody Explorer

Welcome to "Melex-The Melody Explorer", the first interactive site for analytical and statistical exploration of monophonic music. Currently only in the state of a beta version and containing only a rather small selection of songs taken from EsAC Collection, it serves mainly as a prototype for a yet-to-come, full-fledged web-based melodic analysis toolbox. However, already in this state interesting and powerful analyses can be done, giving valuable hints and insights that can serve as a starting point for more in-depth research for for the professional and yet-learning (computational) musicologist.

Melex grew out of a lecture on computational musicology I gave at the University of Hamburg, Germany, in summer term 2006, where I taught inter alia JavaScript as an paradigmatic, easy-to-learn, everywhere-for-everybody-available, yet powerful programming language. One rationale behind this project was to develop a ready-to-use tool for people what want to get acquainted with techniques and methods of (symbolical) computational music analysis at one hand, and on the other to provide a programming environment for my students they could use for developing their own algorithms without starting from the scratch.

As a database I chose a quite arbitrary selection of folk songs from the EsAC folk song collection, which comprises overall a total of many thousands Western-European and Asian tunes. The choice for EsAC data was made because the songs are free and publicly available, because EsAC is an easy to read and quickly to learn musical code, and because the EsAC Collection is a widely-known and -used database in the field of computational musicology and MIR. Currently the analysis modules rely on parsing the EsAC coded melodies from static HTML pages, but there is no limitation to provide other songs from other corpora, as long as they are coded in EsAC.

A documention of Melex functionalities and its interface, including an introduction to the EsAC code is currently being written and can be found here stay tuned and have fun!

Start exploring...

Acknowledgments Thanks to Prof Ewa Dahlig-Turek for providing me with a sample of about 200 chants from Warmia (Eastern Poland) and to Jan Bruder for writing the tonal analysis module.