Artificial Music Intelligence
DeepMind, Unsplash

Beware. The Artificial Music Intelligence Comes

Artificial intelligence is nothing new for us computer scientists. It already existed in the 1950s. What is new now is having the computing power to properly exploit the rather modest models of the human brain.

Repetitive She Can Well

Initial approaches show that we can have everything that is done over and over again in the same way by humans and does not itself require much intelligence done more quickly and more easily with automated computers or computers supported by artificial intelligence much more cheaply, more quickly and with better quality in the future.

This is bitter for all those whose tasks require little creativity and - once learned - only need to be performed in the same way over and over again. In the future, it will be difficult to make a living with such activities. But nothing is lost yet, as artificial intelligence still needs some time to gain such a widespread foothold that it becomes critical. But now is the time to build new skills, and look for tasks with a much higher creative content.

If there's one thing we know in computer science, it's that artificial intelligence can only operate within the framework given to it by programming. Moving within this framework goes hand in hand with the computing power of the hardware. The better the hardware, the faster the results. But not outside the framework set by the programmer. Because that would mean that the artificial intelligence would be able to be creative by searching and treading paths outside its previous world.

However, since we are still far from understanding with brain research what such a creatively acting system would have to look like, the fear that computers will take things into their own hands and take us out of the game is quite unfounded. However, for this very reason, we should be very careful not to give the artificial intelligences that have existed so far too much room and leave them to make decisions for which they are not really equipped.

After all, acting independently according to human and moral concepts would mean that they would be designed or equipped in a way comparable to the capabilities of humans. So let's limit our use of them to the simple things for the time being.

What Does Artificial Intelligence Think About This?

If artists are seriously worried, then we should ask the Experts. And also interesting what one of the already existing Artificial Intelligences think about it. Here is my short interview chat with "ChatGPT Dec 15 Version. Free Research Preview." from OpenAI:

Easy Groophz
What do you think about computer generated music?

ChatGPT 
Computer generated music can be a useful tool for creating new and innovative sounds and compositions. There are many software programs and algorithms that can generate music using artificial intelligence, and some of these programs can produce surprisingly complex and creative results. However, it is important to note that computer generated music is not the same as music created by human musicians, and it may lack the emotional depth and expression that can be achieved through human performance. Ultimately, the value of computer generated music will depend on the context in which it is used and the goals of the person creating it.

Easy Groophz 
Will we get into a situation like Winston talked about computer generated music in the novel "1984"?

ChatGPT 
In the novel "1984", the character Winston speaks about a world in which all music is produced by computers and human musicians are a thing of the past. While it is certainly possible that computer generated music could become more prevalent in the future, it is unlikely that it will completely replace human musicians. Music has always been an important part of human culture and expression, and it is difficult to imagine a world in which human creativity and emotion are not an integral part of the musical process. Additionally, the skill and technical proficiency required to create music on a computer can be quite high, and not everyone may be able to produce music using this method. It is more likely that computer generated music will continue to be used as a tool to complement and enhance human musicianship, rather than replacing it entirely.

You can see from the answers that ChatGPT has a lot of knowledge and can recognize for itself which contexts could be meant. The dystopia from George Orwell's "1984" is certainly the worst for music creators that one can imagine. It is interesting that ChatGPT aims at the answer I would also give to those fears of artists: what makes people, creativity and emotion, is a black hole for machines. 

As a Tool in Music

Without a doubt, we are already seeing how artificial intelligence is making the lives of musicians and engineers easier and helping to produce results faster and more easily. What's interesting here is that it's the professionals who are turning to these tools. It's not because the results are better than if the pros were using traditional methods. No, the time savings are decisive here.

If artificial intelligence automatically delivers a result of 80%, the professional only needs to do the last 10-20% herself - depending on her own requirements or the wishes of the customer. If we now add the development that more and more analog studio technology can be mapped in the (mobile) computer system, such as the mixing console, the effects processors, the tape machine or the cabling, and that in approximately the same quality, then this saves even more time and costs. The place where work is done, or the time when work is done on something, is becoming more and more flexible. The Internet and the synchronous distributed work on songs that comes with it simplifies things even more.

Ideal Conditions For "I Have no Idea About Music" Beginners

Besides the use of professional Loops, Artificial Intelligence is the second leg of an easy entry into music production. The above-mentioned advantages of the professionals can also be used by beginners. There is something here for every budget and requirement. And the option to go pro at some point comes with it.

When you talk to interested people about making music, they often immediately come up with counter-arguments as to why it doesn't make sense to look at the subject any further:

  • No clue about music theory
  • No experience with musical instruments
  • I only know a music studio from TV
  • That takes a lot of time to even get a foothold there

Everything is correct and at the same time, due to modern computer technology, not.

For a large part of the music theory, here especially the chords and melodies, the artificial intelligence already has passable answers ready. Music genres in particular follow patterns that can be easily reused in configurable software. So if you're not a film composer, you'll be able to create something new here without a lot of prior knowledge and with a portion of creativity that automatically follows previous listening habits.

Playing a musical instrument is also no longer a prerequisite for making the instruments in the song sound. Specialized virtual instruments often come with the common playing techniques (again, patterns) for the instrument in question. Anyone who has ever pressed a key on a piano already knows the most important feature for a modern instrumentalist. Most virtual instruments are played with a midi keyboard, which only passes the control information, such as notes in midi format, to the computer, which then generates the sound via software.

If you have never been in a music studio, but know how to use a computer, you are off to a great start in modern music production. Because today everything is in the computer. The equipment is much cheaper to buy, easier to configure and can be used in any combination. There is only one limitation: the power of the computer equipment in the context of the size of the song project.

With this new approach, does it still take years or decades of training and experience to achieve a useful result? Of course, it still depends on one's own requirements. If you want it to be quick and usable, you can whip something up
in minutes with pre-made supplies. If you want it to be very individual, you need more time and money and patience, because it then becomes more and more complicated and elaborate as the demands increase. Of course, the latter is ultimately the path that the professionals must take.

Rainer Eschen (DJ Groophz)

Producer, coach, innovator, futurist, Elevator Funk DJ - first contact with DJing in the 1970s in my parents' discoteques, then with hip hop / rap in the 1980s. Since 2000 producing songs and beats as Bedroom Producer. Funk in focus, additionally Soul, Jazz, Hip Hop, House and other danceable stuff are mixed to a distinctive sound, the Elevator Funk. Since the Pandemic, he has been working more and more as a mentor and coach for beginner producers: Deep inside you there is already a musician and producer! I'll show you how to discover her.