Music News

published : 2023-09-08

'AGT' Judge Simon Cowell Reveals He Is 'Not a Fan' of AI

Cowell Also Embarking on New Business Venture Working with Songwriters

Simon Cowell posing with a microphone during a live performance (taken with Nikon D850)

Renowned music mogul Simon Cowell has made his stance clear on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in songwriting, stating that he is 'not a fan' of the technology.

Cowell, known for his role as a judge on 'America's Got Talent,' believes that the enduring impact of legendary artists like Queen, David Bowie, and Elton John stems from their authentic, timeless songs. In his own words, 'their songs, I think, are as good today as they were then. So, anything which is faking it is for me a bit of a problem.'

While Cowell acknowledges the challenges of the creative process, he emphasizes the importance of songs in an artist's career, describing them as the 'most important part.' Recognizing the difficulties faced by songwriters in today's industry, he recently launched Syco Publishing, a partnership between his media company, Syco Entertainment, and Universal Music Publishing Group. Syco Publishing aims to support and develop songwriting talent.

A songwriter passionately playing the piano in a studio (taken with Sony A7III)

Cowell passionately conveys his love for songs, comparing them to paintings and recognizing their value and impact. He hopes to assist up-and-coming songwriters, viewing great songs as priceless works of art.

Despite his reservations about AI in music, Cowell remains open to new collaborations and the possibility of working with a new band. He believes that finding the right artist or band is a combination of luck and being in the right place at the right time.

The music industry at large is also grappling with the implications of AI. The Recording Academy, responsible for the Grammy Awards, recently revised its eligibility rules to address music created with or by AI. CEO Harvey Mason Jr. made it clear that AI-created elements can still be eligible for songwriting categories, but not for performance. The use of AI has become a topic of controversy, with AI-generated songs imitating popular artists like Drake, The Weeknd, and Eminem gaining attention online.

Artificial intelligence concept image with a robot composing music (taken with Canon EOS R)

In a surprising revelation, Paul McCartney announced that he and The Beatles are working on a final song with the assistance of AI. McCartney clarified that the vocals utilized were John Lennon's original recordings, not artificially generated. This news sparked both excitement and concern among fans, highlighting the complex relationship between AI and creativity in music.

As the debate around AI's role in music creation continues, Simon Cowell's clear stance provides valuable insight into the preferences and concerns of industry insiders. While AI opens up exciting possibilities, Cowell's emphasis on authenticity and the enduring power of human creativity resonates strongly.