Randy Travis, Wife, & Longtime Producer Talk Using AI To Create New Song

The NDA that Eddie had to sign about a big country music secret was about a new Randy Travis song that was created from AI! Travis, his wife Mary and longtime producer Kyle Lehning, stopped by The Bobby Bones Show on how they recreated his voice with AI.  

In 2013, Travis suffered a massive stroke that left him unable to speak. Over a decade later, he can sing again due to AI. They used 50 recordings of his voice to create an AI version and his new song “Where That Came From.” While in studio, Bobby Bones talked to “AI Randy” to get his thoughts on the new technology that gave him back his voice.  “Don’t knock it, until you try it,” he said about using AI. He shared that he had been skeptical of technology his whole life, but when he was given this opportunity, he figured why not give it a shot. It’s encouraging to him to get a chance to sing again, even if it’s in a different way.  

AI Randy said it’s been a special moment for his family. When they first heard the new song, his wife, Mary, didn’t realize how much she had missed the sound of his voice and his kids started tearing up. His longtime producer, Lehning, has worked with Travis since 1985. He was skeptical about using AI to finish his previous recordings, but since Travis and his wife were positive about giving it a try, he wanted to do everything he could to help. As a producer, he’s still learning a lot from this process but is amazed that it worked so well.  

The president of Warner Music Nashville, Cris Lacy, knows there has been a lot of negative discussion about AI lately and shared that a group of executives at Warner came together to discuss what AI for good would look like and that was giving Travis back his voice. Travis gave permission to Warner to go forward with the project and throughout the process he worked with Lehning and was part of the production, song choices and how they edited vocals. Lehning looked back on his career with Travis and said they never recorded music they didn’t both love. They only made music that was true to who Travis was. Now having experience working with AI, Lehning is in favor of it if it sounds authentic. 

Lehning sent in 42 dry lead vocals from Travis’ career and about two months later, they sent him back the model. His wife Mary said right now people are using AI for the wrong reasons. AI songs are coming out that artists did not give permission to, but for someone like Travis who is still alive and gives his blessing for the song to be released, that’s when positive things can come from AI.  

Travis shared that he feels like his life has been given back to him and he hopes he’s able to show the good side of technology and AI. His new song “Where That Came From” is out now!  

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