ALICE COOPER Says The Only Person Who Should Be Allowed To Use AI In Music Is PAUL MCCARTNEY
September 22, 2023
In a new interview with Australia's Studio 10, legendary rocker Alice Cooper weighed in on a debate about people using an AI (artificial intelligence) music generator as a tool to create melodies, harmonies and rhymes based on artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms and machine learning (ML) models. Alice said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I would make a law that the only person allowed to use AI would be Paul McCartney. It's against the law for anybody else, but Paul McCartney, yes, you can use AI. Who doesn't wanna hear a new BEATLES song?"
It was reported back in June that McCartney had created a "new" BEATLES song using AI and was planning to release it in the coming months. The track in question includes vocals from John Lennon, pulled from an old demo recording, with the BBC reporting that it is most likely taken from "Now And Then", a 1978 Lennon recording which is believed to have suffered from an electrical buzzing sound and was part of a demo tape mostly recorded onto a boombox in Lennon's New York apartment. The inspiration from the song came from Peter Jackson's acclaimed BEATLES documentary "Get Back", McCartney told the BBC, since the filmmaker used a custom AI system to separate the vocals of the various BEATLES members from background noise, enabling high-quality reproduction.
"So when we came to make what will be the last BEATLES record — it was a demo that John had, that we worked on, and we just finished it up, and it'll be released this year — we were able to take John's voice and get it pure through this AI so that then we could mix the record as you would normally do," McCartney said. "We were able to use that kind of thing when Peter Jackson did the film 'Get Back' where it was us making the 'Let It Be' album. He was able to extricate John's voice from a ropey little bit of cassette where it had John's voice and a piano. He can separate them with AI."
While two other tracks from Lennon's aforementioned demo tape — "Free As A Bird" and "Real Love" — were released in the 1990s in collaboration with the remaining BEATLES as part of an anthology project, "Now And Then" wasn't included because, according to McCartney, BEATLES guitarist George Harrison wasn't a fan. "George didn't like it. THE BEATLES being a democracy, we didn't do it," McCartney told Q magazine in 1997.
In the aforementioned BBC interview, McCartney said that he was excited at the possibility of using AI to restore old recordings, but admitted that it's "kind of scary" to hear Lennon's voice singing one of his songs.
"People say to me, 'Oh, yeah, there's a track where John's singing one of my songs.' And it isn't — it's just AI, you know," McCartney said. "There's a good side to it and then a scary side, and we'll just have to see where that leads."
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