Paul McCartney revealed during a conversation with BBC Radio 4‘s “Today” that he used artificial intelligence technology to “extricate” John Lennon‘s voice from an old demo to help complete the “final” Beatles song.
The track has not yet been officially revealed, but it is rumored that the song is “Now And Then,” which was supposedly written in 1978. “We just finished it up and it’ll be released this year,” said McCartney.
The demo was reportedly lifted from a cassette which was labelled “For Paul,” recorded by Lennon in his New York apartment shortly before his death in 1980.
McCartney said in the interview that he recruited the help of famed director Peter Jackson, who used AI to clean up audio for the acclaimed 2021 documentary series The Beatles: Get Back.
“[Jackson] was able to extricate John’s voice from a ropey little bit of cassette,” he told host Martha Kearney. “We had John’s voice and a piano and he could separate them with AI. They tell the machine. ‘That’s the voice. This is a guitar. Lose the guitar.’ So when we came to make what will be the last Beatles’ record, it was a demo that John had [and] we were able to take John’s voice and get it pure through this AI.”
“It’s a very interesting thing, you know. It’s something we’re all sort of tackling at the moment and trying to deal with,” McCartney said of the technology. “It’s kind of scary but exciting, because it’s the future. We’ll just have to see where that leads.”
(Photo: Raphael Pour-Hashemi)
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