Tuning to the Future: AI's Crescendo in the Music Industry

NNicholas October 1, 2023 5:37 PM

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been making waves in various sectors, and the music industry is no exception. From generating music to creating voice clones, AI is revolutionizing the way we view, listen to, and create music. Here's a summary of the latest trends and developments in the relationship between AI and music.

AI's anticipated impact on music

With the continuous evolution of technology, it's no surprise that the music industry anticipates AI to be a game-changer in the near future. Robert Kyncl, CEO of Warner Music, advises embracing the technology and believes that it will eventually be integrated into the copyright protection framework. The dissemination of AI technology will continue in collaboration with distribution platforms.

Legalities surrounding AI voice clones

The rise of AI has raised legal concerns, particularly concerning AI-generated voice clones. Artists, industry groups, and record labels are grappling with the legalities of using these voice clones in music, especially without permission from the person being cloned. A growing issue, these AI fake voices not only impersonate real stars but can also be used to generate songs for a fee, raising several questions about copyright and consent.

AI music's rise on streaming platforms

Despite initial pushback and concerns about impersonation of real artists, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek announced that the platform would not ban AI-made music. However, it's still unclear who will be responsible for monitoring potential copyright infringements. Meanwhile, listeners are unknowingly being served AI-generated music, which though often of inferior quality, is still generating revenue for its creators.

The availability and ease of use of AI music-generating tools have increased significantly. Programs like Humbeatz and Uberduck transform typed descriptions or voices into music, while research at the University of California hints at the future possibility of generating music just by thinking about it. While these tools hold great potential for creativity and advancement in music, concerns exist over misuse.

As AI-made music becomes more mainstream, charts like AI Hits have emerged to track and rank these songs. While it may not have the same prestige as the Billboard Hot 100, it serves as a testament to the increasing presence and acceptance of AI music in the industry.

In response to the rise of AI music, awards shows like the Junos and the Grammys have stipulated that songs with significant portions of AI-generated music will not be eligible for nominations. However, as AI continues to improve, differentiating between human- and AI-created music could become increasingly challenging.

Naming the AI music genre

As AI music solidifies its presence in the industry, discussions have begun regarding its classification. One proposed genre name is 'Syn,' short for 'Synergetic,' reflecting the collaborative nature of human and AI in the creation of this new kind of music. While some people express skepticism, others, including artists, are exploring and experimenting with AI music.

Rise of AI pop idols

AI pop idols are gaining popularity, especially in Japan. Figures like Hatsune Miku and Kizuna AI have amassed huge followings, with fans generating songs for their favorite AI pop stars. This trend highlights the potential of AI in creating new forms of entertainment and engagement in the music industry. However, it has not been without controversy, as evidenced by backlash over AI-generated rapper FN Meka and AI pop star Noonoouri.

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