Music is everything. Imagine you’re down, and you don’t have anything to do, all you can do is listen to your favorite music and refresh yourself. You have a different playlist to go with your mood all day long and every day activities.
There could be a high probability that the music you have been listening to has been recommended to you by your music streaming application, which fits your mood and present activity.
Music tech companies such as Tencent backed Joox, QQ Music, KKBox, etc., seem to have various value propositions, concerning the numerous regional music provided to the listeners. They curate a playlist exclusively for you according to your music interests. AI is also helping artists make music and helping them prove their ability. With the help of AI it has become easier for artists to promote their music. AI is benefiting the music industry in several ways.
How AI is helping the Music Industry
1. AI Helps In Making Music
Western music possesses about 12 notes and 24 major and minor scales. Include tempo, harmony, and articulation, and you get myriads of potential songs waiting to be created.
Due to AI, musicians and non-musicians have access to elegant yet simple-to-use creation. This is helping them remix songs, and gain mastery of tools such as Flow Machines, Pixel Player, Amper, Melodrive, Boomy, Landr, etc. These AI-powered tools generate limitless tunes for you to “play” with, to enhance your creativity. Or probably even be creative on your behalf. For instance, Musician Taryn Southern recorded an album entirely composed by AI.
Aside from composition and collaboration, AI also vocalizes music. It took about 100 iterations, but electronica composer Ash Koosha developed an AI named Yona, not only to compose music but also to sing lyrics.
2. AI, Marketing Music, and Discovering Future Stars
How will listeners find new artists, and how will consumers know who to listen to? Artificial intelligence assists in focusing on the effort.
Based on BuzzAngle Music’s 2018 Year-End Report, the Audio-on-demand streams were totally 534.6 billion in the United States alone in 2018. Assisting new artists in getting discovered is costly, and without doing it efficiently, a talented artist could remain undiscovered.
AI technology can assist in determining which fans would enjoy an artist’s music. Likewise, AI-powered features like Spotify’s Discover Weekly, a selected list of music for every listener, help fans sort through the streams of music to discover new music that’s appealing to them.
Artificial intelligence is also assisting the industry with A&R (artist and repertoire) discovery. It’s always been challenging to search through music and discover promising artists that are yet to be signed to a label, but it’s even more intense with the overflowing of streaming music. Warner Music Group got a tech start-up last year that uses an algorithm to review social, streaming, and touring data to discover promising talent. Apple also got a start-up that specializes in music analytics to support the A&R process.
AI is secretly influencing the music we listen to in diverse ways.
3. AI-driven promotion
In 2018, about 2.65 billion people used social media, a number expected to increase to almost 3.1 billion by 2021. That’s undoubtedly a whole lot of data for AI to draw from.
Artificial intelligence can receive insights on your fan base that’s more than “also listening to One Direction”. With an AI that can analyze music fans’ activity, you can figure out that a fan has a desire for the Paleo diet and prefers surfing over jogging. Both tie-in advertising and cross-promotions.
AI can also help identify which social media influencers have the most impact whenever they tweet your work, as any capable AI media company can explain when you sign its contract.
4. AI Helps In Personalization
One of the essential benefits of artificial intelligence in the music industry is about personalization. We now get recommended songs, albums, artists, and playlists based on the music we usually listen to.
These music recommendations we receive are sent to us with the use of artificially intelligent algorithms. Data is gathered from our usage on the app. It is curated and fed into artificial intelligence systems that gradually learn what we listen to. It sends us new music that we may like based on the previous songs we’ve heard.
Problems Associated With AI In Music Industry
A critical thing with AI is that it needs to be adequately trained. In the case that we consider, AI will have to go through lots of songs just to have an idea of what good music is supposed to be.
The problem that occurs here is that music is copyrighted. Allowing AI ‘listen’ to copyrighted songs means that the AI would generate tracks similar to the copyrighted songs that it ‘heard.’ Legally, it’s difficult to understand if the original artist should get any credit for the AI-generated songs. Also, should the people who worked on the AI and made it listen to specific songs, copyrighted or not, receive any credit for the songs that the AI generates? Who gets the money that’s made by an AI-generated song?
Based on the present laws, there will be copyright infringement only if the AI generates a song that sounds more like an existing song, and every other case is free from copyright infringement. This seems drastically unfair for the artists whose songs are used by AI to learn.
The level of AI complexity in the music industry has attained a stage where we now see robots entering the mainstream music industry. We know that the potential of AI is helping humans in the generation of audio content. But, AI is here to substitute artists altogether.
Do you know that robots can develop not only original musical pieces but also play music? Amazing, right? In the future, we might probably see robots performing on stage along with musicians and artists.
A decade ago, we never predicted that AI would innovate the industry to an extent it is currently doing. Also, we do not know what technological disruption AI will bring a decade from now. So far as AI does not damage artists’ and musicians’ jobs, let’s wait for AI to take total control.