AI-generated Drake, Weeknd track pulled from streaming platforms after UMG files claim

Image of the rapper Drake sitting in a car

Over the course of the last few days, there are several AI generated tracks that have been doing the rounds of Tiktok and YouTube spoofing the vocals of musicians like Rihanna, Drake, and The Weeknd. 

This prompted Universal Music Group to release a statement denouncing the fake Drake song that was circulating online, titled “Heart On My Sleeve.” 

The song, which features vocals from Drake and The Weeknd, was created using AI or a vocal impersonator, uploaded by an individual who goes by Ghostwriter977 on Tik Tok, where the tracks were initially uploaded, and credited as Ghostwriter on streaming platforms where it racked up hundreds of thousands of streams

“Heart On My Sleeve” was streamed 15 million times on TikTok, 625,000 times on TikTok, and 250,000 times on YouTube before its removal from TIDAL, Deezer, Apple Music, and Spotify, according to various sources.

In their statement, Universal Music Group (UMG) stated that they had “no involvement in the creation or distribution of this recording” and that the song was “not authorized or approved by any artist or label.” The statement emphasized the importance of respecting artists’ intellectual property and the harm that can come from the distribution of unauthorized recordings.

Last week, UMG requested that streaming platforms such as Spotify prohibit AI companies from using their songs to train their machines, and the RIAA cautioned that doing so would result in widespread copyright infringement. In the previous month, a significant coalition of industry organizations cautioned that AI technology should not be utilized to supplant or undermine human creativity.

The incident highlights the ongoing challenges and debates surrounding the use of artificial intelligence in music production and distribution, and the importance of maintaining ethical standards and respecting artists’ intellectual property rights.

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