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Judas Priest’s Richie Faulkner on AI Music: “There’s Still Gotta Be Some Sort of Artistic Merit to Stuff”


The debate about the value of AI music is nowhere near its conclusion. Every day, the technology grows more advanced and convincing, with defenders believing it’s simply a new medium of creating art and defenders saying that it will devalue (or destroy entirely) the work of human creators. Judas Priest guitarist Richie Faulkner recently weighed in on the subject during an appearance on the “Rock Of Nations With Dave Kinchen And Shane McEachern” podcast and his thought process is extremely balanced.

“I’ve been putting drums down on demo tracks for years, and I’m not a drummer. So I’ve been playing keyboard drums… To me, it’s almost the same thing. I’m sure someone’s got an argument against that. But we’ve been creating stuff, like drums, for example…

“I haven’t put the time in to learn how to play paradiddles or tune a snare or mic a drum. I can just throw on a program and play a snare that’s perfectly miked, perfectly tuned, sounds great and play a kit and put that on a demo to express my idea of what I want.

“Now, is that the same as an AI program? It’s probably different. But it might be just the way things are going, and it’s up to us to figure out how to do things… I don’t know what I’m trying to say. I don’t quite know.”

He continued to speak about the subject, saying:

“I think there’s pros and cons with AI. I think it’s good to get your ideas out, like the drum program, for example, but there’s still gotta be some sort of artistic merit to stuff. Or maybe there doesn’t anymore; maybe people don’t care about that. I don’t know. It’s the time we live in.”

There’s probably never going to be a one-size-fits-all solution for handling AI in art and music, but Faulkner’s approach seems realistic if you believe Pandora’s already out of her box.

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