I wonder if there is a database or technique of collecting the timings of a song?

I found this post linking to MusicXML. However, it seems MusicXML is for sheet music. I am looking for data relating to music of the more general variety.

I'm looking for something that gives the lyrics of a song as well as the time in the song a lyric occurs.

Can anyone suggest anything?

  • What kind of license do you need? Freely re-usable?
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Nov 10, 2014 at 8:54
  • Ideally free but I'm open to any license the best option has to offer
    – sisko
    Nov 10, 2014 at 15:36

2 Answers 2


(Not a very practical answer, but maybe can get the ball rolling...)

If you can create a list Youtube links to the songs or albums you want, you can download the captions (subtitles). These have a timestamp along with the lyrics.

With YouTube you can search for videos with captions. Unfortunately, I found that many are listed with captions but actually don't have any meaningful text.

enter image description here

Here is an example of one video with good captions (link).

enter image description here

You can see the transcript by going to "More" and then "Transcript".

enter image description here

One tool to do download captions is called Google2SRT.

What is Google2SRT? Google2SRT is a tool that can download "not embedded" subtitles (Closed Captions - CC) from YouTube and former Google Video and convert them to a standard format (SubRip - SRT) supported by most video players.

There are some online tools, too, such as keepsubs.com and yousub.net (although questionable how reliable).

Also, a Firefox add-on.

You could also use OpenSubtitles.org to download subtitles soundtracks or concerts.


I think what you are looking for are .lrc files aka scrollable lyrics

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.