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Tap & Fiddle: a Dataset with Scandinavian Fiddle Tunes with Accompanying Foot-Tapping

Lordelo, Carlos; Ahlbäck, Sven; Benetos, Emmanouil; Dixon, Simon; Ohlsson, Patrik

The Tap & Fiddle consists of 28 stereo recordings of traditional Scandinavian fiddle tunes with accompanying foot-tapping, which is standard performance practice within these musical styles. Its corpora contains not only the mixed signals, but also the two isolated instrumental tracks that can be used as ground-truths for music source separation algorithms.

  1. The fiddle track (harmonic track);
  2. The foot-tapping track (percussive track).  

Foot-tapping is very often an integral part of the musical expression in Scandinavian fiddle music as a percussive accompaniment. For instance, some studies have shown that the dance beat of the music can even be unintelligible without the foot-tapping part [1]. Notwithstanding, foot-tapping in performance of fiddle music has not been systematically studied yet. Hence, apart from contributing to the music source separation community, we hope that the release of Tap & Fiddle can also bring contributions to researchers and enthusiasts working with analysis of fiddle music as well as studies of metrical expression in music in general.

Audio and Repertoire Characteristics:

The set contains recordings of different dance types, including Norwegian Halling music, with straight single and double tapping as well as Swedish polska tunes, where tapping is considerably scarcer with tapping on beat 1 and 3 in 3-beat time being the most common way to tap. 

The sound of the foot-tapping ranges from more soft foot-tapping produced by a sock-covered foot, to sharp, distinct and loud foot-tapping produced by shoes with hard heels on parquet. In addition, the loudness of the foot-tapping regardless of sound source in relation to the fiddle is varied between and within recordings.

It is also important to note that some of the recordings in the dataset are variations of the same Scandinavian fiddle tune. Those recordings are versions containing different acoustic conditions and audio characteristics for the foot-tapping and/or for the violin sound within the same tune.

Recording Methodology: 

Each isolated signal was recorded by one fiddle player in a natural 30 mroom with separate miking for the foot and the fiddle (violin), using close-up Shure SM-58 microphones and a Focusrite sound card recorded in Audacity on a Macbook PRO. The mixture signals were created by adding the two isolated signals together. All the recordings have been made using the same instrument, which was played by the same performer. 

The audio files are uncompressed and saved as stereo ".wav" files with sampling frequency of 44100 Hz and 32 bits per sample. The average duration for a recording in Tap & Fiddle is 65 seconds, totalising around 65 x 28 = 30m 20s of full play time.

The dataset is divided into a training set with 23 recordings and a test set with 5. We recommend that supervised approaches should be trained on the training set and tested on the test set.

How to cite:

If you use this dataset, please, provide the following citation in your work:

  • C. Lordelo, E. Benetos, S. Dixon, S. Ahlbäck and P. Ohlsson "Adversarial Unsupervised Domain Adaptation for Harmonic-Percussive Source Separation" in IEEE Signal Processing Letters 2020 (under review at time of this writing)
This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 765068.
Restricted Access

You may request access to the files in this upload, provided that you fulfil the conditions below. The decision whether to grant/deny access is solely under the responsibility of the record owner.


The Tap & Fiddle Dataset has been compiled by Carlos Lordelo, Sven Ahlbäck, Emmanouil Benetos, Simon Dixon and Patrik Ohlsson and is offered for non-commercial research use only. The data is provided for educational purposes only and the material should not be used for any commercial purpose

The data is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, PO Box 1866, Mountain View, CA 94042, USA.

The creators of Tap & Fiddle and their corresponding affiliation institutes are not liable for, and expressly exclude, all liability for loss or damage however and whenever caused to anyone by any use of Tap & Fiddle or any part of it. 


  • [1] Pandora Hopkins "Aural Thinking in Norway: The Lore of the Harding Fiddle" in PhD Thesis at University of Pennsylvania (1978), Pennsylvania, USA

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