Drake responds to AI ‘Munch’ cover: “This is the final straw”

Eerily accurate emulations of Drake, The Weeknd, Rihanna, Kanye West and Beyoncé have recently surfaced

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Canadian rapper Drake has addressed the trend of AI-generated music covers in a story on Instagram after a viral track of him rapping Ice Spice’s Munch surfaced.

In the post, Drake shared a Universal Music’s story that asked its DSPs to block AI companies from accessing its songs. “This is the final straw AI,” Drake wrote in the caption of the post.

A Universal Music Group spokesperson said that they have a “moral and commercial responsibility to their artists to prevent the unauthorized use of their music and to stop platforms from ingesting content that violates the rights of artists and other creators.” UMG has also said that it expects their platform partners to prevent AI services from being used in ways that harm artists.

Some AI-generated music clips that have surfaced include Travis Scott rapping Pop Smoke’s For the Night, Rihanna singing Beyonce’s Cuff It, and Kanye West singing Justin Bieber’s hit, Love Yourself. With these AI voice models, just a quick sample of a person’s voice can deliver a verse that sounds like the artist.

During a set, David Guetta played a track featuring an AI-generated Eminem-style lyric about EDM. Although the track cannot be distributed commercially, generative AI has left many artists questioning what their future roles will be in the realm of creating art. Young Guru also recently criticised an AI-generated Jay-Z verse, saying: “People should not be able to take your name, image and likeness without permission”.

Drake’s complaint comes after Universal Music Group asked streaming services including Spotify and Apple Music to prevent artificial intelligence companies from accessing their copyrighted songs. In an email to these platforms, UMG said that it had become aware that certain AI services had been trained on copyrighted music “without obtaining the required consents” from those who own the songs. “We will not hesitate to take steps to protect our rights and those of our artists,” UMG warned.


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