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  /  Project   /  Blog: Creating uniquely tailored music using Artificial Intelligence with Drew Silverstein from Amper…

Blog: Creating uniquely tailored music using Artificial Intelligence with Drew Silverstein from Amper…


If artificial intelligence can drive cars, why can’t it create music?

This is an article based on an episode of the AI Podcast by BNR Newsradio. Listen on iTunes, Spotify or the BNR site.

After spending 5 years and millions of dollars putting together complicated datasets, the AI Amper Music is using is able to create music in a matter of seconds.

Many creators struggle with finding the right music for their content. What would be the right background music for your Youtube video, the good intro tune for your podcast or the perfect beat to sing to? Amper Music found a solution to this issue with the help of Artificial Intelligence; creating uniquely tailored music within a matter of seconds. All it needs is a type of music, the mood and the length of the track and there you have it. What does this mean for the future of music?

In this episode of the AI Podcast, Li’ao Wang speaks with Drew Silverstein.

In this episode of the AI Podcast, Li’ao Wang speaks with Drew Silverstein.

Drew is known for being the CEO and co-founder of Amper Music, a start-up creating uniquely tailored music for any type of content using artificial intelligence. His revolutionary ideas led to him being selected for the Forbes 30 under 30 list. What led Drew to founding Amper Music, what is the company all about and how will AI shape the future of music?

After graduating from Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music where he studied Music Composition and Italian, Drew went on to produce award-winning music for film, television and videogames. With his portfolio reaching from films like Ride Along, The Undetected, TV-Shows like the Smurfs and EA’s NHL & Madden in the videogame category, it’s safe to say Drew earned his right amount of credits. Working in the music composing industry for big projects like the above, time and budget were neither a problem. Working with directors, producers and editors, he found that they would often lack both time and budget for the other projects that they’d be working on. The projects that didn’t have the big industry budgets nor the luxury to spend weeks on just the music.

The only solution for many of these creators was using stock music. Searching for the right piece of music can be a frustrating process and feel endless at times. Mainly because of the fact that most found pieces lack creativity and uniqueness. The creator has to settle with something close to his ideal piece of music, but the journey doesn’t stop there. Then the hurdle of the financial and legal side of using stock music arises. What happens with the licensing whenever you intent on commercializing your project?

They basically wanted uniquely created music, but they didn’t have the resources for it.

This struggle led to Drew receiving many requests of creators demanding the music to be created for them, instead of being forced to using stock music. All of this within the given timeframe and budget. ‘They basically wanted uniquely created music, but they didn’t have the resources for it’. After many disappointments, a realisation came and even a possible solution.

“What if we could build a creative AI that gives the same collaborative experience of working together with a composer but within the given time and budget?”

“Great, can we have it by friday?” was the first thing they heard after pitching the idea to a few of those creators.

After spending 5 years and millions of dollars putting together complicated datasets, the AI Amper Music is using is able to create music in a matter of seconds. The datasets describe music from a theoretical perspective but also describe emotion, genre, mood, performance, instrumentation, orchestration and as many other elements from the creative world as possible. Not only does this mean the tempo and harmony, but more abstract questions such as; What makes someone feel excited? What’s the difference between feeling excited and feeling happy?

All these datasets did not exist prior to Amper creating them, Drew says ‘We are describing how music exists, from scratch’.

After combining these descriptions with the use of datasets a music composition is created which then has to be transformed into audio. This is being done with the use of a collection of millions of different samples. Every note of every instrument, capturing every possible way you could play a piano, an accordion, a violin, every dynamic, every articulation. This recording process results in millions of very detailed sounds that then can be stitched together in one piece of audio that sounds like it’s recorded professionally in one go. The AI is not mixing and matching existing sound bites into a seemingly new audio track, it’s composing a unique piece of music from scratch.

All the AI needs is the type of music, the mood that you’re trying to portray and the track length and in a matter of seconds Amper will compose a piece of music and deliver it to you straight away. There you have your uniquely created piece of music that comes with a royalty free global license that’s ready to use, allowing you to use the music without any restriction. This enables anyone around the world to truly be able to express themselves through music regardless of their background, expertise or access to resources.

Drew has an optimistic view for the way AI can be used in the future of music. Where sceptics are afraid AI-composed music will dominate the charts along the works of ‘real’ artists, but Drew sees a clear distinction between functional and artistic music. ‘Music behind a social media video is considered functional music, where music in a Marvel movie is much more artistic’. Artistic music will always be created by humans but AI is allowing content creators to create and own their music in the exact way they want to. Besides that, it can help existing artists and composers in their creative journey, stimulating their creativity and exceeding their personal abilities.

Listen to the full episode to learn more about the role of Drew Silverstein, what Amper Music is doing and what AI has to offer for the future.

Source: Artificial Intelligence on Medium

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