The artist known as Grimes (real name Clare Boucher) has said that you’re totally free to use an AI-generated version of her voice to make new music, just as long as you give her a healthy 50 percent of the royalties that the track generates.
This week, Grimes launched a new AI voice software, dubbed Elf.Tech, designed to help people duplicate her voice to create music. The platform, which Grimes unveiled in a Twitter thread Sunday, allows users to upload recordings of their own voice, which can then be Grimes-ified via the wonders of automated technology. The vocals can then be mixed with other electronically generated sounds and beats to spawn new tracks that sound quite a bit like the real thing.
“we ask for 50% splits on master recording royalties in exchange for a grimes feat and distribution,” the singer tweeted Sunday. “There’s a *small* chance we can organize getting you publishing $ as well but we can’t guarantee this yet. But I hope we can!! Would be cool.”
Boucher’s high-pitched ethereal voice and rave vibed tracks already sorta sound computer generated, so I guess it only makes sense that she’s now giving a thumb’s up to an idea like this. According to Boucher, this is the future of music: if you’re an artist, you let an algorithm replicate your voice, then you cash in for a percentage of the profits.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Boucher’s manager, Daouda Leonard, rationalized the weird decision this way:
“She often says that creativity is a conversation with those who came before us and those who are going to come after us...And so the idea is that instead of her attempting to control what is a gift from the universe, she’s like, ‘Well, let me opensource that. Let me allow people to access what the universe gave me as a gift. And if I do that, what are the new experiences that can be created out of that?’”
Of course, Grimes is also the ex-partner and baby momma of tech billionaire Elon Musk, who has been pouring money into AI startups like there’s no tomorrow. Musk co-founded OpenAI, the company that launched ChatGPT—one of the most popular new AI-powered chatbots. I guess while the former couple are no longer together they’re on the same page about how totally awesome AI is for the future of humanity.
Anyway, now that Grimes has opened Pandora’s Box, the internet is being flooded with new songs created using her voice. Scroll through to check out some of the AI creations that feature “Grimes.”