How AI can Improve Music

According to my mom I’ve been a musician since before I could walk. She would fight me to get the Harmonica out of my mouth, and that progressed into playing piano. From there, I learned to play guitar and I’ve been playing ever since. In fact, I learned guitar specifically because I was cat fished as a 20ish year old with no future. A woman once told me my problem is that I have no idea where I am going in life. It sure would be nice to snap my fingers and have everything work out, but I prefer the stories I end up with when it all sorta comes together at the end. Anyway, someone on Reddit asked this question and there’s a few ways AI could help musicians.

One of the biggest struggles of being a content creator is getting noticed. A lot of people ask their friends, family members, and coworkers for support. That’s a great starting step, but you need support outside of your immediate circle. Gaining traction can be like finding the light switch when you’re in the middle of a dark room. Knowing your intended audience can provide the guidance that flipping a light switch gives in a dark room. Training AI models to analyze music and the tastes of your intended audience OR just creating dashboards in excel are both ways a background in AI can help. AI can take on a more direct role in aiding musicians too.

The great composers were able to tell stories with just musical notes. They noted patterns that worked very well, and created their own grammar with those notes. One thing that has always struck with me is that Beethoven used the ‘G’ key to communicate anger and frustration. My Squier Strat is actually tuned in open G because I like that note a lot. Anyway, recommender systems could be built to recommend a key, scale, or tempo based on how a musician wants a song to feel. There would be some legwork on behalf of the musician, but once the model is trained it would cut down on work exponentially if they wrote that way. However, considering the role the musician would need to play to create that model I do not believe AI music can replace artists.

All generative art is created by a model trained by a human. It does not matter if the “art” is a disgusting deepfake or something more socially acceptable. AI cannot be smart, and AI cannot be creative on its own. It has to find the same trends that Beethoven and other artists found on their own and used to create timeless art. However, It can imitate an artist’s style if over trained. At the end of the day though, it will likely always be a human forging a new path.

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