To Exist is BeautifulA.I. vs. Composers – Part II
I’m writing this on what might be the eve of human musical creativity receiving the final push off the field and into the sidelines by A.I.
It’s legitimately scary: Pretty soon here, we may be living in a world where all music is either A.I.-generated or assumed / suspected of being so, whether it is or not.
Many people think this will make it so difficult for composer / arrangers to find work that composing as an art form might go the way of the Dodo, having faded from educational curricula for want of student demand.
While it’s not impossible for that to happen, I don’t think it will…given a couple of caveats. Here’s why:
I think we can all agree that A.I. will never be able to write something as powerful as Copland’s Billy The Kid, Lennon’s Imagine, Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, Mozart’s Requiem, Tower’s Squib Cakes, Coltrane’s Naima or Zeppelin’s Kashmir.
Software simply lacks the humanity. It will never really swing like Duke or Bassie, never play the blues. But us? We CAN write that well, IF we learn the skills we need.
What sets our creation apart from A.I. is our humanity and our invention. A.I. will always be derivative. It will always be machine-generated, it will always imitate.
It’ll never be capable of really ripping the listener’s heart right out of their chest, the way Mozart’s Requiem does, or exploding in the ballsy exaltation you feel when you crank Kashmir on a good listening rig. That opening stanza from Orff’s Camina Burana? Holy crap, be serious. Software will simply never write like that.
But humans can.
Connecting to your listener in that visceral, emotional way is what will set YOUR music apart from A.I.
To be continued.