Ice Cube Slams Artificial Intelligence as ‘Evil and Demonic’

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - JUNE 19: Ice Cube looks on during Week One at Credit Union 1 Arena on
Quinn Harris/Getty Images for BIG3

Rapper-actor Ice Cube slammed artificial intelligence (A.I.) as “evil and demonic” after being attacked on social media.

The Ride Along 2 and High Note star hit back at a suggestion that he is a hypocrite for calling A.I. “demonic” when he himself has made himself famous by rapping over “samples,” saying it’s “totally different than taking a dead artist and making a new song they never approved.”

“Samples are approved or denied by the song owners. Totally different than taking a dead artist and making a new song they never approved and saying things they may not agree with. That’s evil and demonic to me,” Ice Cube said in response to a Twitter user to suggested he is a hypocrite.

“Ice Cube, musician who became famous rapping over samples, says A.I. is ‘demonic,'” the Twitter user said.

“@icecube said that if he were to be targeted by an A.I. voice replicant, he wouldn’t hesitate to sue whoever programmed the A.I. and whoever played his illicitly borrowed voice,” the Twitter user added.

The Twitter user cited a recent article by Fortune, headlined, “Ice Cube, musician who became famous rapping over samples, says A.I. is ‘demonic’ for doing a very similar thing.”

“I think A.I. is demonic,” the rapper had said during an appearance on the Full Send podcast last week. “I think there’s gonna be a backlash because of A.I. I think people are gonna want things organic and not artificial.”

The term “sampling” refers to the concept of digitally coding another artist’s music and reusing it as part of their own recording.

Sampling has been “foundational to hip-hop in particular, as it allowed artists who maybe didn’t know how to play an instrument but had an ear for a good beat to generate a hit song,” Fortune noted.

The magazine added:

Early hip-hop artists created the genre by pulling together samples from jazz, rock, and funk songs. New York City’s Beastie Boys, working with the master samplers the Dust Brothers, released their second album in 1989, Paul’s Boutique, an enduring cult classic that is 95% samples, according to Rolling Stone. The album would likely cost millions under today’s sampling rules, and the flurry of lawsuits it generated turned other artists off wide uses of sampling.

Ice Cube’s comments come as scribes with the Writers Guild of America (WGA) enter their fourth week of a strike, centered largely around Hollywood writers compensation complaints and their fear that major film studios will replace them with A.I.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.


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