Paul McCartney Announces New Beatles Song Produced with Artificial Intelligence
Former Beatles songwriter and bassist Paul McCartney announced in a recent interview with BBC Radio 4 that a new Beatles song, likely a composition of his own titled “Now And Then,” created with the help of artificial intelligence (AI), is now complete and will be released later this year.
The track was originally part of a music cassette that McCartney received from his former bandmate John Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono in 1994. Two of the demo recordings from the cassette, “Free As A Bird” and “Real Love,” were previously released in 1995 and 1996 respectively.
Using AI, Lennon’s voice was removed from the “Now And Then” demo so that McCartney could mix and complete it. The project was re-launched for director Peter Jackson’s 2021 Beatles documentary The Beatles: Get Back, which used machine learning to recognize the Beatles’ voices and isolate them from other sounds. The same technique allowed McCartney to sing a virtual duet with Lennon on his recent tour.
While AI has recently received attention for its generative capabilities and freely available image generators, it has also been used to “complete” Ludwig van Beethoven’s 10th symphony and for musical publicity purposes.
The Beatles’ last official album was released in 1970, and apart from McCartney, drummer Ringo Starr is the only surviving member of the band. George Harrison died in 2001.