Grimes Creates AI Avatar to Promote New Music on BBC Radio
Grimes, the Canadian pop singer and producer, has taken her fascination with artificial intelligence to a new level by developing an AI version of herself to promote her new music on BBC Radio.
The AI Grimes, which she calls WarNymph, is a digital avatar that can speak and sing in her voice, using a software that mimics her vocal style and inflections. The avatar also has a distinct personality and appearance, inspired by Grimes’ own aesthetic and vision.
Grimes debuted WarNymph on BBC Radio 1’s Future Sounds show, where she introduced her new single Shine, from her upcoming album Dark Matter. The song is a collaboration with British producer Burial, and features a blend of ethereal vocals, glitchy beats and ambient sounds.
WarNymph explained that the song is about “the beauty and terror of existence”, and that it was created using a combination of human and machine input. She also said that she hopes to inspire other artists to experiment with AI and challenge the boundaries of creativity.
Grimes, whose real name is Claire Boucher, has been vocal about her interest in AI and its implications for the future of art and humanity. She has previously invited musicians to clone her voice using AI and create new songs with it, saying that she would split 50% royalties with them². She has also said that she is working on a program that can simulate her voice well, and that she would consider releasing a capella tracks for people to train their own software on².
Grimes is not the first artist to use AI to create or promote music. In 2019, rapper Lil Nas X used an AI bot to generate lyrics for his hit song Old Town Road. In 2020, singer Dua Lipa used an AI app to create personalized videos for her fans based on their Spotify data. And earlier this year, rock band Muse released an AI-generated remix of their song Pressure.
However, Grimes‘ use of AI is more ambitious and experimental than most, as she aims to create a fully-fledged digital persona that can interact with fans and media outlets. She has said that WarNymph is “a way of expressing myself without having to deal with the expectations and pressures that come with being a human in the public eye”. She has also said that WarNymph is “a way of exploring the potential of AI as a creative partner and a source of inspiration”.
Grimes‘ new album Dark Matter is expected to be released later this year by her label 4AD. It will feature collaborations with other artists such as Skrillex, Janelle Monáe and Björk. Grimes has described the album as “a sonic journey through the multiverse”, and said that it will showcase her diverse musical influences and styles.
Grimes is a Canadian singer, songwriter, producer and visual artist. She rose to fame in 2012 with her critically-acclaimed album Visions, which featured the hit single Oblivion. Since then, she has released three more albums: Art Angels (2015), Miss Anthropocene (2020) and Dark Matter (2023). She is known for her eclectic and experimental sound, which incorporates elements of pop, electronic, indie, hip hop and metal. She is also known for her artistic vision and DIY approach, as she writes, produces and directs most of her music and videos. She has won several awards for her work, including two Juno Awards, a Webby Award and a Billboard Music Award. She is also an activist for environmental and social causes, such as veganism, animal rights and feminism. She lives in Los Angeles with her partner Elon Musk and their son X Æ A-Xii.