Grimes Offering 50% of Royalties for Making an AI Song with Her Voice [Updated]

"Feel free to use my voice without penalty. I have no label and no legal bindings"

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Grimes, photo by Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

    In news that shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone familiar with her subversive antics, Grimes is inviting fans — or rather, flat-out encouraging them — to make an AI-generated song using her voice.

    “I’ll split 50% royalties on any successful AI generated song that uses my voice,” Grimes tweeted on April 23rd in reference to “Heart On My Sleeve,” the phony Drake and The Weeknd song that went viral earlier this month. While that AI-generated tune prompted Universal Music Group to file a copyright claim, Grimes insists that this would be totally kosher: “Feel free to use my voice without penalty. I have no label and no legal bindings.”

    She went on to say that she thinks “it’s cool to be fused [with] a machine” and that she likes “the idea of open sourcing all art and killing copyright,” a rich statement coming from someone who shares children with the second-wealthiest man in the world.


    Update: Grimes has launched her AI voice software, Elf.Tech. The beta release allows fans to record or upload vocals that will be transformed into her voice.

    But even before AI began really infiltrating mainstream music in the past few months, Grimes has spent a lot of time thinking about it. Her 2018 single “We Appreciate Power” pondered AI’s impending omnipresence, and the following year, she argued that AI would “be so much better at making art” than humans and would eventually make live music obsolete. She also celebrated the birth of her first child by releasing AI lullaby music.

    Those might all be fair takes, but then in 2021, she went so far as to call AI “the fastest path to communism,” which probably has Marx spinning in his grave. But hey, if Grimes wants us to use her likeness free of juridicial confines, might as well take advantage — can someone please make an Art Angels part two? See her tweets below.


    While Liam Gallagher was evidently thrilled to hear an AI-generated version of Oasis last week, the majority of entertainment figures — including Jerry Seinfeld and Nick Cave — have pooh-poohed people trying to replicate their work. Drake himself also expressed contempt with it after someone made a (horrifying) AI cover of him rapping Ice Spice’s “Munch,” saying it was “the final straw.”

    Editor’s Note: This article was updated on May 2nd with the release of  Grimes’ Elf.Tech software.