Machine Living

AI: ‘There’s almost no way to stop it’

In this series of articles, video productions, and podcasts, we tap into a community of creators to try to make sense of how we make our way in the age of AI. One theme is constant and timeless: adapt, or risk fading away, in a world where machines increasingly influence our way of living.

By Will Frampton
Owner and Director at McLeod Media

• Episode 3: Joe Gransden, trumpet player, singer, and entertainer

The third in our series of conversations around Artificial Intelligence, speaking with fellow creators and producers, features Joe Gransden.

A veteran trumpet player, vocalist and entertainer, renowned across Atlanta and the southeastern United States, Gransden has been delighting and thrilling audiences for more than 30 years, with more than 20 albums, and thousands of live performances, to his credit.

For all of the change he and other musicians have witnessed in the recording and performance industry since the 1980s and 90s, Gransden points to Artificial Intelligence as being bigger and more impactful than anything else yet seen.

Joe Gransden
As Gransden surveys the landscape and implications of AI’s impact, it is at best a feeling of curiosity, with unsettled thoughts around what the future could look like for musicians, and the art of performance.

“I have mixed feelings,” said Gransden. “I’m very nervous about it, and I’m also encouraged. I don’t quite know what it can do, I don’t think anyone does. It possibly could really enhance the creative experience, but it also could maybe take away some of the human factor in music, and the arts.”

Watching his teenage son become immersed in the realm of AI art production has alerted Gransden to the reality of this generation: they will embrace new technology without much regard for how it affects the status quo.

“I think that my son and his friends are not at fault for being interested, and being blown away, by this technology,” said Gransden. “They’re kids, and they’re seeing this incredible technology work right in front of their eyes, so it’s very exciting for them.”

“For me, it’s very scary,” said Gransden. “I think we just have to make sure that we don’t take this too far. There’s almost no way to stop it. Is music, are musicians, artists, poets … are we going to be able to express ourselves and compete with a computer? I think, yes. I think if it’s not a human song, then it really doesn’t say much.”

“(AI) is here to stay. Hopefully we harness it in the right way.”

We thank Gransden for his taking part in this series, and for bringing thoughtful perspective to future that musicians and entertainers face, as they learn to live alongside AI.

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