There’s a talent competition for singing robots.

“Singing robots?” you say. “Doesn’t that describe all those TV talent competitions?” Maybe, but in this case, we’re talking about artificial intelligence.

The AI Song Contest is just that: A musical competition featuring programmers and their creations go head-to-head with music written and performed entirely by machines and code. The whole thing was inspired by the Eurovision Song Contest and featured 38 entries from around the world this year.

This year’s winner was a song called “Listen to Your Body Choir” performed by M.O.G.I.I.7.E.D., a group of musicians and scientists based out of California. They got their creation to extrapolate on the melody and lyrics of “Daisy Bell,” the 1892 song otherwise known as “A Bicycle Built for Two.” Why? Because of this from 1961: the first-ever computer-synthesized speech and singing.

Which is why Stanley Kubrick ended up doing this in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

That was a fictional singing computer set 20-ish years ago. Here’s what we actually have today.

Here’s another sample. Can AI be punk? You be the judge.

Read more at the New York Times.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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