Speech Prosody 2006

Dresden, Germany
May 2-5, 2006

Intonational Differences in Lombard Speech: Looking Beyond Fo Range

Pauline Welby

Institut de la Communication Parlée, Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble, Université Stendhal, Grenoble, France

Previous studies on speech in noise (Lombard speech) have generally reported an increase in fundamental frequency (Fo). This study examines three other potential intonational differences: choice of intonation pattern, tonal scaling, and tonal alignment. Seven French speakers read a corpus of short paragraphs, in quiet and in 80 dB white noise. Four of the speakers increased Fo range across the target accentual phrases in noise. Six speakers upscaled individual tones; there was great inter-speaker variability in tonal scaling, in contrast with an earlier study on Dutch. No influence of noise on intonation pattern type was found. In particular, there was no tendency to produce more "early rises" in noise, even though these rises are cues to word segmentation. Producing an early rise (thus a LHLH or LHH pattern) may not add to the salience of the commonly produced LH pattern. In addition, no difference in tonal alignment was found, in contrast to the findings of an earlier study. This null result may be due to paradigm differences between the two experiments.

Further work on intonational differences in Lombard speech should concentrate on aspects beyond Fo range or global averages, including those that may be language-specific.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Welby, Pauline (2006): "Intonational differences in Lombard speech: looking beyond fo range", In SP-2006, paper 109.