Paul McCartney Used AI to Get Back John Lennon’s Voice

Ursula the sea witch isn’t the only one reproducing vocals this year. Paul McCartney used AI to separate out John Lennon’s voice on an old recording for an upcoming record that he referred to as “the last Beatles record,” he shared with BBC Today on June 13. McCartney first encountered the powers of AI during the process of making Get Back, when Peter Jackson used it to clean up voices. “He was able to extricate John’s voice from a ropy little bit of cassette,” McCartney said. “He could separate them with AI. He could tell the machine, ‘That’s a voice. This is a guitar. Lose the guitar.’” McCartney used that same process to create new music. “When we came to make what will be the last Beatles record, it was a demo that John had that we worked on,” he said of the project, which will be released later this year. “We were able to take John’s voice and get it pure through this AI.” So there will be new old music by the Beatles in 2023. (Taylor Swift better watch her back!)

Despite the helpfulness of AI, McCartney isn’t entirely convinced of our new overlords’ positive worth. “There’s a good side to it and a scary side,” he said. “So we’ll just have to see where that leads.” McCartney did not elaborate more on the subject — perhaps out of fear of what the robots would do if he said more.

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