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Universal Music Group Partners With SoundLabs for Trained AI Technology 

The technology will allow artists signed to the Universal label to develop custom voice models for their personal use in studios

 

Universal Music Group (UMG) has announced a strategic agreement with SoundLabs to offer responsibly trained AI technology and vocal modeling plug-in “MicDrop” to UMG artists, that “will allow artists to change their voice into any voice in real time.”

SoundLabs is a music production and software company that creates responsibly trained generative AI tools for the next generation of music makers. The company was founded by the GRAMMY-nominated producer and electronic artist BT, alongside collaborator Lacy Transeau and the award-winning veteran software developers Joshua Dickinson and Dr. Michael Hetrick.

The SoundLabs MicDrop plug-in creates official "ultra-high fidelity" vocal models for artists using their own voice data for training. Simultaneously, artists will retain control over ownership and have full artistic approval and control of the output. 

MicDrop’s aim is to empower artists and producers to experiment with new possibilities in sound production through AI technology. The custom vocal models will be available for UMG artists’ exclusive creative uses, and not accessible to the general public. 

According to the press release, UMG has long recognized and welcomed the potential of AI to enhance human creativity. Recently, UMG and Roland published the “Principles for Music Creation with AI,” a series of clarifying statements about the responsible use of AI in music and advocating for their use across the arts and music industry.

The outlined principles highlight the opportunities of AI in music, while underscoring the need for transparency, equity, and community involvement. While aiming to expand artistic possibilities, SoundLabs also acknowledges and supports the proper management of artists’ intellectual property rights and the retaining of creative control. 

“It’s a tremendous honor to be working with the forward-thinking and creatively aligned Universal Music Group,” BT said in the press release. “We believe the future of music creation is decidedly human. Artificial intelligence, when used ethically and trained consensually, has the promethean ability to unlock unimaginable new creative insights, diminish friction in the creative process and democratize creativity for artists, fans, and creators of all stripes. We are designing tools not to replace human artists, but to amplify human creativity.”

“UMG strives to keep artists at the center of our AI strategy, so that technology is used in service of artistry, rather than the other way around,” added Chris Horton, SVP, Strategic Technology at Universal Music. “We are thrilled to be working with SoundLabs and BT, who has a deep and personal understanding of both the technical and ethical issues related to AI.

"Through direct experience as a singer and in partnership with many vocal collaborators, BT understands how performers view and value their voices, and SoundLabs will allow UMG artists to push creative boundaries using voice-to-voice AI to sing in languages they don’t speak, perform duets with their younger selves, restore imperfect vocal recordings, and more.”

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