Apple’s Logic Pro: Will New AI Features Change the Music Industry?

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As the new iPad Pro and iPad Air go on sale, it may be the next-generation machine learning (ML) enhancements of Apple’s Logic Pro music software that has everybody singing.

Well, that and their controversial ‘Crush’ advert.

The 2024 hardware debut from Apple brings sleek new versions of the iPad ranges, including the latest M4 chip, Magic Keyboard, and Apple Pencil features.

But Apple’s “Let Loose” event was also an excuse to announce its spectacular AI-advances of its popular digital audio workstation (DAW), Logic Pro.

Apple inadvertently re-ignited the ethics of the iPad’s advanced AI features with an advert showing musical instruments, including a guitar, piano, and trumpet, being destroyed.

Nevertheless, Apple’s remarkable new Logic Pro AI features are exceptional and will undoubtedly change the music-making process across the board.

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So, join us as we explore Logic Pro’s advanced new features and examine AI’s impact on the music industry.

Key Takeaways

  • iPad and Mac users can harness Logic Pro AI-powered music-making capabilities, although Apple’s ‘Crush’ advert stirs controversy.
  • Logic’s intuitive personal drummer, bass, and keyboard session musicians elevate the collaborative live-playing experience through machine learning.
  • Using AI and the M-series silicon chip Stem Splitter tool can separate tape cassette recordings into individual components, including vocals, drums, and bass.
  • Latest technological advances raise new questions about artists’ rights, ownership, and ethical uses of AI Music.

Logic Pro Upgrades and the Rise of AI in Music Production

Ever since Apple first acquired Logic Pro in 2002, the popular audio recording software platform has benefited from a never-ending stream of upgrades and enhancements, and it was only a matter of time before artificial intelligence (AI) joined the party.

Artists including Ed Sheeran, Billie Eilish, and Pharrell Williams have all produced hit songs using Logic in the past. It’s plausible that its new AI-powered features will only continue to accelerate creativity levels in music creation… despite the objections of a music purist.

After all, Logic Pro somewhat levels the playing field for creatives who can now create hit tracks from the comfort of their bedroom.

Only introduced on the iPad last year, the release of the most advanced Logic Pro ever for the iPad2 and Mac 11 unleashed a stunning array of beneficial tools, including the debut of Logic’s ‘Studio Assistant.’

Most notably, its revolutionary application is the Stem Splitter. Powered by AI and its M-series silicon, Stem Splitter allows even novice musicians and producers to disassemble mixed audio recordings.

Now, Logic Pro users can upload old demo cassette tapes, Voice Memos, and live event recordings and separate the individual elements within the track, such as the vocals, drums, and bass, in lightning-quick time. Once separated, they can also begin to apply effects, change the mix, and add new parts.

Apple has also expanded its previous drummer tool to include new ‘Session Players’ featuring virtual Bass and Keyboard Players. While the drummer application isn’t new, it is more advanced, and the scope of adding more musical AI-led instruments to a piece is ground-breaking.

This is a fact not lost on Apple, which highlights Logic’s ability for users to use their own ‘personalised’ AI-driven backing band to elevate the live-playing experience and respond directly to musical inputs and feedback.

As DAW technology continues to evolve, Mac and iPad users might soon be able to create soundtracks with an entire orchestra – but without the expense of hiring real musicians.

AI’s Growing Integration into the Music Industry

Apple’s Logic Pro certainly isn’t the only DAW to have begun introducing AI to aid inspiration during music creativity and production, with Ableton’s Live 12 and Image‑Line’s FL Studio as two of its two mainstream competitors.

The continual advancement of AI in music creation is undoubtedly adding further fuel to the fire about the boundaries of how far its influence should reach.

Firstly, the ensuing debates around AI-generated music — which relies solely on a library of pre-existing music and sounds — continue to obscure the distinction as to whether the resulting tracks can truly be deemed original.

Instances of voice cloning technology to produce new deepfake songs added a unique element to the discussions about the ethics of AI music.

This issue came to the fore last year when artist Ghostwriter used AI-generated vocals, pairing artists The Weeknd and Drake together to create the viral hit ‘Heart On My Sleeve.’

While platforms such as Apple Music, Tidal, and Spotify removed the song, and neither artist sang on it, the issue of who would own the rights to an AI-synthesised track like this remain.

Even industry-leading record labels are taking a stand. Universal Music Group — which represents artists including Sting, Coldplay, and Lady Gaga — called for streaming platforms to stop the availability of AI-generated music, which “violates the rights of artists and other creators.”

Additional factors such as autonomous music light show tools such as MaestroDMX also raise a potential moral dilemma.

While the impressive AI generator can design light shows by identifying potential intros, build-ups, drops, and transitions in the live music, it could be argued it’s at the expense of a role usually performed by a skilled lighting engineer.

However, there is a growing number who believe AI can have a favorable impact on artists, record labels, and the listening public — albeit when done ethically.

Even the legendary Beatles singer, Sir Paul McCartney, admitted that while speaking of the chance to sing with John Lennon again with the help of AI in the ‘Get Back’ documentary, it is one of his favorite parts of the show now.

The Bottom Line

Clearly, there are benefits and consequences to AI’s inclusion in the music production process, as well as how fans and audiences enjoy listening to it.

While we’ve seen AI applications creeping into how we listen to music, such as Spotify’s AI Playlist, its impact on the music industry is ever-increasing.

Advanced digital audio workstations such as Logic Pro help reduce the need to hire expensive recording studios to aid creativity. Plus, with the further inclusion of AI tools, who knows what potential AI-inspired hits could soon be hitting the charts?

Like most things artificial intelligence can influence, bad actors will always be capable of exploiting its potential for unethical gain.

However, AI also has the power to open up entirely new musical avenues for artistic expression and collaboration – which has to be a good thing for music lovers.

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Stuart Hughes
Technology Writer
Stuart Hughes
Technology Writer

A graduate of Canterbury Christ Church University, Stuart Hughes is a freelance writer across technology, finance and travel.