The world of AI has shook up the rap world as we hear Drake cover Kanye songs and now, Biggie cover Tupac records. Last week, Yedits, a Reddit group dedicated to “mixing and editing of a wide variety of artists’ music,” shared a minute-long snippet of an AI cover of Tupac’s “Hit’ Em Up” with The Notorious B.I.G’s vocals. The astounding preview landed online last week but over the past few days, it’s gained significant traction on social media and YouTube.
The AI cover is something you wouldn’t expect to hear, especially when considering that Biggie is dissing himself and Bad Boy as a whole. The technology used created an uncanny resemblance to Biggie Smalls’ actual voice. However, it makes us wonder how this could impact further posthumous releases from his estate. Meta already hosted a Notorious B.I.G. VR concert including a “true-to-life, hyperrealistic” avatar of the late rapper as he performed his hit records. Perhaps, as AI technology evolves, there might be some sort of way to recreate his voice to produce new records.
AI Biggie Strikes, Again
The cover of “Hit Em Up” came right before Timbaland debuted his own collab with the late Biggie Smalls via AI. Earlier this week, the Virginia legend debuted a new song that utilized AI to recreate Biggie’s vocals. On the song, Biggie references Young Dolph, Nipsey Hussle, and Pop Smoke over Timbo’s futuristic production. However, Timbaland did acknowledge some of the issues surrounding AI technology, promising that he’s “got a solution” that he’s working on. “It’s gon’ be beneficial to everybody,” Tim said.
Artificial intelligence has undoubtedly spurred concerns already, especially as the “Godfather of AI” apologized and expressed regrets over these advancements. Prior to this, Universal Music Group called for streaming platforms like Spotify to take action against uploading AI covers as it takes away money from the artist and the label. We’ll ultimately have to see how this pans out in the future. Check out Biggie’s AI Cover of “Hit ‘Em Up” above and sound off in the comments with your thoughts on the future of artificial intelligence.