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December 5, 2012 by finetuningblog

Last week, I posted about technology in music, and briefly spoke about AutoTune. Now, I know it’s a controversial topic: is it ruining music, is it making people less talented, is it making everyone sound the same?

In my opinion, moderation is key with the usage of ANY effect in the realm of audio production. Some people use AutoTune in a clever way. For example, the earliest use of AutoTune was in Cher’s hit Believe.

In Believe, AutoTune was used to alter Cher’s voice to give it a unique effect. It wasn’t used because she couldn’t actually sing. Now that was in 1998, around the same time Andy Hildebrand (the guy who created the AutoTune effect) had pioneered the technology.

Ironically, Andy wasn’t always into music. In fact, he started out in signal processing, using audio to map the earth’s subsurface.

It’s been more than a decade since then, and the AutoTune gimmick has become essentially its own genre. And in a lot of ways, it’s really messing up originality in the music world. However, AutoTuning has led to what Andrew Revkin (New York Times DotEarth Blogger, Pace Univ. professor and music) called the ‘musification’ of media.

So what is ‘musification?’

Well, I can’t really explain it any better than AutoTunetheNews does.

Oh Antoine Dodson…you were a pop star and you didn’t even know it! (Check out the original news interview, you can’t make this stuff up.)

‘Musification’ is now a popular genre. And it’s all been made possible by AutoTune. I mean, did you ever think you’d hear Al Gore on a hip track? Or Obama singing Carly Rae Jepsen’s Call Me Maybe?

Now if you’re noticing a trend, most of these are meant to be funny. Well for those of you who really HATE AutoTune, here’s a video that may sway you. Some brilliant producer took a series of clips from Mr. Roger’s dialogue and crafted a really powerful song. It works so well, it’s almost like it was intended.

Despite the fact that there are cool applications for AutoTune, many people remain adamantly opposed. The Anti-Auto Tune Movement on Facebook is just the tip of the iceberg. JayZ feels so strongly about the matter, he actually released a song known as Death of Auto-Tune, more commonly known as D.O.A.

(This is the censored, safe for work version of the song.)

Christina Aguilera wasn’t a fan of it either for a while, just read her shirt! It seems like she’s changed her mind more recently though.

I leave it up to you – what are your thoughts on the AutoTune debate? Let me know! 🙂


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