Ice Cube pushes back against AI-generated music

Written by on May 23, 2023

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The discourse around AI and its growing association with music grows daily. Ice Cube does not like how AI has been used so far, calling the act “demonic.”

Cube had harsh words about the bubbling phenomenon of AI being used to create vocals of singers and rappers on songs they’ve never recorded. Last month, a song called “Heart on My Sleeve,” featuring The Weeknd and an AI-generated vocal from Drake went viral, according to NPR. Cube stated during an appearance on the “Full Send” podcast that he feels AI is doing more harm than good.

SiriusXM and Pandora Playback With Mount Westmore Including E-40, Too Short & Ice Cube
Ice Cube speaks during “SiriusXM and Pandora Playback” on Dec. 7, 2022, at SiriusXM Studios in Los Angeles. (Photo by Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for SiriusXM)

“I think AI is demonic; I think AI is going to get a backlash from real people,” Cube said. He went on to say that Drake should sue everyone responsible for creating and releasing the song with his AI-generated vocals. He also warned that he would sue anyone that tried to develop his vocals with AI.

“I’m [going to] sue the motherf***a who made it and the people and the platform who play it,” Cube continued, comparing the act to sampling without permission. “Somebody can’t take your original voice and manipulate it without having to pay.”

Cube’s criticism of AI comes after Timbaland publicly championed AI-generated music. The producer revealed to Forbes that he intends to commercialize and legitimize software that creates AI-generated music. Timbaland wants to make AI-generated vocals of deceased artists, like The Notorious B.I.G.

“It’s going to really be a new way of creating and a new way of generating money with less costs,” Timbaland said. “I’m already here. This is what I’m doing. I’m going to lead the way.”

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