Deepfake Drake and the Weeknd Creator Doubles Down With Rihanna and Bad Bunny Track
@ghostwrider777 they tried to shut us down… #badbunny #badbunnysong #rihanna #rihannanewmusic #aimusic ♬ POR QUÉ by GHOSTWRIDER777 – ghost rider 777
A deepfake song called “Por Qué,” performed by AI versions of Rihanna and Bad Bunny from a creator only known as Ghostwriter, exploded on TikiTok and Soundcloud this week, almost immediately after the same creator’s track of deepfake Drake and the Weeknd went viral. The two songs mark a new public awareness of deepfake music mimicking real artists and prompting a new dimension to the heated debate over deepfakes and how synthetic media produced by generative AI is made and shared.
The Drake and The Weeknd AI song “Heart on My Sleeve” drew 10 million TikTok views and hundreds of thousands of listens on streaming services before it was removed, and “Por Qué” saw similar numbers before its initial removal, meaning a lot of people have now seen how effective this technology is at mimicking real performers. For instance, French DJ and music producer David Guetta created and played an AI-written and performed Eminem song at some of his recent shows, calling it “Emin-AI-em.” Meanwhile, Aloe Blac deepfaked his own voice to perform a multilingual cover of Wake Me Up last year with synthetic media developers Metaphysic and Respeecher’s help. Metaphysic’s deepfake technology is centered on visual synthetic media, combining those performances with real singers to compete on America’s Got Talent (AGT). But for the finals, their synthetic Elvis Presley included an audio performance enhanced by Respeecher, best known for de-aging and synthesizing the voices of Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker for recent Star Wars TV shows.
Artists and music labels have been scrambling to respond for years, with copyright strikes and agitation for regulatory action becoming more common. Universal Music Group has even asked Spotify and other streaming services to prevent AI developers from using the music it owns to train their models.
“We have a moral and commercial responsibility to our artists to work 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 said in a statement. “[Deepfake music] begs the question as to which side of history all stakeholders in the music ecosystem want to be on: the side of artists, fans and human creative expression, or on the side of deep fakes, fraud and denying artists their due compensation.”
I’ll split 50% royalties on any successful AI generated song that uses my voice. Same deal as I would with any artist i collab with. Feel free to use my voice without penalty. I have no label and no legal bindings. pic.twitter.com/KIY60B5uqt
— 𝔊𝔯𝔦𝔪𝔢𝔰 (@Grimezsz) April 24, 2023
Other artists have more positive views on the technology, with singer Grimes announcing on Twitter that she will offer 50% of the royalties on any AI-generated song that uses her voice, adding that she would like to end the entire royalty system by “killing copyright.” Others are getting ahead o the trend by producing their own AI voices, such as Holly Herndon, who offers a free synthetic version of her voice to make music with called Holly+, and the musical group YACHT, who trained an AI model on their music then had it write an entire album called “Chain Tripping.”