(This is for XBMC 9.11 only; XBMC Dharma does not support Chinese songs lyrics yet.)

I had guests over for the weekend and they have never seen the AppleTV before. Impressed, I’m sure, but they were delighted to see Chinese lyrics on the big screen when XBMC was playing Chinese songs. So this post details how to get XBMC’s lyrics system going.

Firstly, please update the SVN Repo Installer if you have not already done so, XBMC -> Favorites [press the remote’s left button] -> SVN Repo Installer -> Check for updates.

Next, within the same SVN Repo Installer, select xbmc-addons-chinese -> scripts -> LRC Lyrics, and go through with the installation, and you’re done.

Setting up: If you now go to XBMC’s Script category, you will find the newly installed LRC Lyrics script inside. For other scripts that you installed via the SVN Repo Installer, you will execute them from within this Scripts category. However, XBMC’s music player has a special function reserved for lyrics, which you can put to good use, quickly calling up the LRC Lyrics script while listening to your MP3s. Here’s how to do it. XBMC -> System -> Skin -> Addon Scripts Shortcuts -> [enable] XBMC Lyrics, and browse to the this file, Scripts -> LRC Lyrics -> default.py, to set it as the “Path to Lyrics Script.”

Are you ready to listen and sing to your favorite tunes with on-screen lyrics?  Play a tune, then go into full-screen mode by pressing and holding the Play/Pause button. Now press and hold the Play/Pause button again to drop own the Media Controller, and select the Lyrics icon (it looks like a speech cloud).  Voila!  The lyrics of the playing song is fetched from the internet, and displayed scrolling for you to sing-along.  The lyrics are saved in your AppleTV so the next time you play the songs they show up immediately.

Enjoy your AppleTV; now significantly more fun with XBMC.

Oh, of course the LRC Lyrics script support English song’s lyrics.  Korean and Japanese?  Yah those too.  Cool eh?  Just don’t expect to find lyrics for unpopular songs, and sometimes you have to select from a list of identically titled songs.

Why can’t iTunes’ do the same?  😦


Sep 23, 2010 Addendum

A user reported that he is unable to find the “xbmc-addons-chinese” repository. I have no idea why it’s missing from his install, nor how to manually add new repository sources in the SVN Repo.  Fortunately, I know how you can install the LRC Lyrics script manually, as follow:

  1. Download the zip file from here: http://code.google.com/p/lrclyrics/downloads/list
  2. Unzip it and upload the entire folder and its content into the following folder in AppleTV:

    ~/frontrow/Library/Application Support/XBMC/scripts

  3. Go read the paragraph “Setting up” to complete the installation.

That’s it!