Drake | Photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage

AI-Generated Song Featuring Fake Drake and The Weeknd Vocals Pulled From Streaming Platforms

Over the weekend, a track featuring vocals imitating Drake and The Weeknd, along with production purporting to be from Metro Boomin, went viral on TikTok. However, none of those artists were directly involved in the creation of ‘Heart on My Sleeve’, which was uploaded to the platform over the weekend by a user called Ghostwriter977.

Generative AI was used to create the song, which has amassed millions of views and hundreds of thousands of Spotify plays since being uploaded to music streaming platforms earlier this month.

Listen to Ghostwriter’s AI-Generated Song Below

The artificial Drake sounds remarkably similar to the rapper, with references to Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber and 21 Savage. “I got my heart on my sleeve with a knife in my back, what’s with that?” the creation raps during his verse. “Metro made the beat so you know that it’s gon’ slap.”

The artificial Weeknd is less of a success, not particularly matching either the vocal sound or lyrical style of the Canadian crooner. It’s not clear if the entire song was crafted with assistance from AI, or simply the soundalike vocals. Either way, it attracted praise from fans of Drake and The Weeknd. As Rolling Stone points out, one commenter on the now-unavailable TikTok video called it “unreasonably good”, while another said it was the “hardest Drake [song] in a long time”.

Now, however, the song has been pulled from streaming platforms such as Spotify and Apple Music, along with YouTube, who said they “removed the video in question after receiving a valid takedown notice”.

It isn’t clear who exactly requested the takedowns on streaming services and YouTube, but Universal Music Group – who Drake, The Weeknd and Metro Boomin are all signed to via subsidiary Republic –has condemned the song since it went viral. In a statement to Billboard, a representative for UMG said the track demonstrates “why platforms have a fundamental legal and ethical responsibility to prevent the use of their services in ways that harm artists”.

“The training of generative AI using our artists’ music (which represents both a breach of our agreements and a violation of copyright law) as well as the availability of infringing content created with generative AI on DSPs, begs the question as to which side of history all stakeholders in the music ecosystem want to be on: the side of artists, fans and human creative expression, or on the side of deep fakes, fraud and denying artists their due compensation,” UMG said. “We’re encouraged by the engagement of our platform partners on these issues – as they recognize they need to be part of the solution.”

An account on Twitter purporting to be Ghostwriter seemingly responded to UMG’s statement. “I was a ghostwriter for years and got paid close to nothing just for major labels to profit,” they wrote. “The future is here.”

Further Reading

The Weeknd Breaks All-Time Record for Spotify Monthly Listeners

Drake and 21 Savage Sued for Their Fake Vogue Magazine Covers

Fake Drake Challenges the Real Drake to a Boxing Match

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