Nick Cave isn’t too impressed with ChatGPT’s capacity for music. Up personal blogthe singer-songwriter issued a scathing rebuke to a set of lyrics written by the AI chatbot “in the style of Nick Cave.”
“What ChatGPT is in this case is replication as a mockery,” Cave writes. “ChatGPT may be able to write a speech or an essay or a sermon or an obituary, but it cannot create a true song… Songs come from suffering, by which I mean they are based on the complex, internal human struggle of creation and, well, as far as I know, algorithms don’t feel.
The lyrics were submitted to Cave by a fan named Mark. The Australian musician thanks Mark, but continues: “With all the love and respect in the world, this song is rubbish, a grotesque mockery of what it is to be human, and well, I don’t like it very much. ”
The song contains the lyrics:
In the middle of the night I hear a call
A voice echoes through the room
It’s the song of a siren that draws me in
Takes me to a place where I can’t begin
I am the sinner, I am the saint
I am the darkness, I am the light
I am the hunter, I am the prey
I am the devil, I am the savior
Since the launch of ChatGPT last year, it has been a sensation. While the chatbot created by OpenAI isn’t a huge leap forward in artificial intelligence, its open-access launch has given millions of people the chance to play with cutting-edge technology and discover its surprising and varied capabilities.
As Cave points out in his blog post, one of ChatGPT’s strengths is its flexibility: the bot can write in a huge range of styles. But the system is limited in other ways. For example, it tends to take false information as fact and is prone to repeating social biases in its training data (which consists of large swathes of the web).
However, ChatGPT’s ability to mimic human prose challenges many norms. While Cave thinks algorithms can’t imitate humans because they can’t feel, the lack of sense doesn’t stop the technology from being widely used in other domains. In education, for example, teachers warn that ChatGPT is already being used extensively writing essaysand that new approaches to education will be needed to adapt.
But if Cave is right, at least music teachers should still be able to distinguish between man and machine.