AI is coming for the music industry, whether it is ready or not
Anghami, a music streaming service based in the Middle East and North Africa, has partnered with Mubert, a generative music platform, to create thousands of AI-generated songs.
Mubert's technology uses artificial intelligence (AI) to take samples written by flesh-and-blood musicians and sound designers and arrange them into finished tracks.
Where It Started
The partnership between Anghami and Mubert is focused on creating "musical football cheers" for users in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region. Anghami users can select a country they want to support and receive a unique song generated by Anghami's tech and informed by the user's data. According to Mohammed Ogaily, VP of Product at Anghami, the service has already generated over 170,000 songs using this process.
Anghami Intends to Become the World's Largest AI Catalog
Anghami claims this project is the first time any music service has generated such a volume of bespoke songs. The company also plans to host over 200,000 AI-generated songs on its platform in the future.
In addition to using Mubert's technology and its own machine learning algorithms, Anghami aims to match users with the closest genre based on the music its fans listen to. So, for example, if a user listens to a lot of rock, the song generated for them would return in that style.
Tik-Tok's Relationship with AI
Other companies, such as TikTok's parent company ByteDance, have also expressed interest in AI music. In July 2019, ByteDance acquired Jukedeck, a start-up specializing in creating royalty-free music for user-generated online videos. In May 2020, ByteDance launched Mawf, a machine-learning-driven music-making app that analyzes incoming audio signals and "re-renders" them using what it has learned from other songs.
The Ethics of AI Music
The ethics of AI music are complex and multifaceted, with a range of potential concerns and implications. However, some of the key ethical considerations related to AI music include the following:
Authorship and ownership: Who owns the rights to AI-generated music? Are the algorithms and software creators, the human musicians whose work is used as samples, or the users who generate the music?
Creativity and originality: Does AI-generated music have the same level of creativity and imagination as music created by humans?
Employment and labor: Could AI-generated music replace human musicians and sound designers in the music industry, leading to job loss and economic disruption?
Cultural impact: Could AI-generated music homogenize musical styles and culture or provide new opportunities for musical experimentation and diversity?
Quality and aesthetics: Some critics argue that AI-generated music may be of a different quality than human-generated music or may not be aesthetically pleasing to some listeners.
Access and inclusion: Could AI-generated music be more accessible and inclusive for some people, such as those with disabilities that make it difficult to create music by traditional means?
Overall, the ethics of AI music are an evolving and debated topic, and it will be important for stakeholders to continue considering and addressing these ethical issues as the technology and its use in the music industry continue to evolve. Certainly, one thing we do know is that music AI is coming, and no one is going to stop it.