Turn text prompts to music with Google’s ‘experimental AI tool’ MusicLM

A new challenger has entered the (generative AI) game.

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MusicLM, the AI-powered tool from Google that turns written text prompts into high-fidelity music, is now available for public testing.

According to Google, all you have to do is type in a prompt like “soulful jazz for a dinner party” or “a calming violin melody backed by a distorted guitar riff” and MusicLM will create two versions of the song for you. Users can then vote on which one of the two tracks they like better, which serves to “help improve the model”.

The tool is also capable of transforming whistled and hummed melodies to the style you want — simply input the tune along with a text prompt directing MusicLM how you’d like for the melody to be played (for example, as a piano solo or an opera singer) and let the AI do the heavy lifting.

Google MusicLM
Image: Google

In a video introducing the technology, Simon Doury, Google’s Artist In Residence, says that the tool could come in handy for musicians looking to generate accompaniment: “If you don’t play the piano or guitar, you start prompting and you get an accompaniment,” he explains. “For example, if you’re a drummer and you want something to play with, you can just type and you have something.”

Described as an “experimental text-to-music model that can generate unique songs”, MusicLM was trained on five million audio clips (amounting to 280,000 hours of music), plus an additional dataset of 5,500 music clips with descriptions written by actual musicians. Each caption consists of multiple sentences describing various aspects of the music such as its genre, mood and type of instrument.

The tool was first previewed in an academic paper this January, though the team noted at the time that they had “no plans to release models at this point”, and warned of ethical challenges posed by the tool, such as the inclusion of copyrighted data from training data into the generated songs.

Those interested can sign up to test out MusicLM through Google’s AI Test Kitchen.

Learn more about what MusicLM can do at google-research.github.io

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