Does artificial intelligence (AI) have a place in hip-hop?
From AI-generated tracks with The Weeknd and Drake to the Notorious B.I.G., the use of this technology has caused quite a stir in the culture.
Now, one industry heavyweight has weighed in to share their thoughts about AI.
AI & Hip-Hop
“I don’t even know why people are excited because… it’s fake,” said renowned producer Jermaine Dupri when asked his thoughts about the technology during a press conference at the Traffic, Sales & Profits (TSP) conference in Atlanta, GA.
He continued, “So to be getting excited about something fake… then you’re fake. Because it’s unfortunate if you didn’t get to hear Biggie rap or see Biggie rap. I feel like that’s the excitement of the legacy and legendary things. The fact that you [think you] can bring these people back to life in some kind of way is ridiculous to me.”
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What’s more, the So So Def founder eludes that the use of AI for the purpose of trying to create new music with someone who is no longer here with us can be an insult to the people who actually had the chance to work with them while they were still alive.
Tapping Into The Unknown
“It takes away from what you actually feel, especially somebody that actually grew up or worked with these people or have been around those people,” he continued. “They have stories about those times. AI comes in and it’s like washing away all of this.”
While Dupri isn’t a fan of the advancements of the technology within music, there are some people who are open to its possibilities.
As previously reported by AfroTech, fellow producer and Virginia native Timbaland has embraced AI and has even vowed to take the lead on its future in the music industry.
An Opportunity For Success
“It’s going to really be a new way of creating and a new way of generating money with less costs,” he told Forbes previously. “I’m already here. This is what I’m doing. I’m going to lead the way.”
While his decision to create a collaboration with late rapper Notorious B.I.G by way of AI through his Miami-based Light Energy Labs company was met with criticism, Timbaland refuses to be afraid of the offerings of the technology.
“I don’t want to be afraid of what’s going on,” he said to the outlet. “I want to figure out a solution.”
Former Roc Nation President Benny Pough is also optimistic about what AI has to offer in the business.
“I think what AI is gonna do is gonna be revolutionary in regards to shortcuts in the business, but you still have to think about the fact that the business is still about the artists,” said Pough backstage during the TSP conference. “Some folks won’t make it, but it will make those who are great, become greater because the pool will get narrower.”
He continued: “And obviously, with everyone having the same tools to be on the same level, there’s still going to be those who are going to be on another level. So, just enhancing technology. If you think about it, evolution has happened in every business and the music business isn’t immune to it. For the most part, those who will adapt will win, and those who won’t…won’t.”