New music is no longer something, due to a pair of attorneys who made an algorithm to write each and every musical tune that may possibly exist. As opposed to claiming all songs as their private property, but the duo have released their whole catalog of songs into the public domain, in the expectation that this will bring an end to copyright lawsuits.
Lawyer, musician, and developer Damien Riehl developed the idea after realizing that all singer-songwriters are basically walking on a”melodic minefield”, since there are only a finite number of melodies that could exist. Therefore, with every new song that gets written, the odds of producing something genuinely unique decreases, and the chance of composing a melody that is already recorded by someone else raises.
In a recent Tedx Talk , Riehl clarifies that this would not be an issue if it were not for the ridiculous character of copyright legislation, which say that a piece of music becomes copyrighted the moment it’s recorded. Even worse, it’s likely to be sued for”criminal violation”, whereby an artist might have to pay a settlement to some other artist even if they claim to have never heard the tune they are accused of copying.
Riehl websites numerous such instances, showing how George Harrison was found guilty of unconscious violation after the chorus to his tune My Sweet Lord was deemed to be too much like a track called He’s So Nice by The Chiffons. In another case, Radiohead were made to name a group called The Hollies as co-writers of the song Creep, which allegedly included a melody which also appears in one of the latter group’s songs.
To try to bring an end to these scenarios, Riehl teamed up with Noah Rubin to make an algorithm that could create every 12-note melody which has ever been composed or may ever be written, using one octave of musical notes. The algorithm uses the same’brute force’ technique that hackers use while trying to steal passwords, by essentially creating every possible combination of characters.
A total of 68 billion melodies were created, which are now all available at allthemusic.info.
The pair argue that their algorithm highlights the way that musical melodies are basically just numbers arranged in a special order, and that because numbers can not be copyrighted, music should also not be restricted by infringement laws.
“No song is fresh. Noah and I have exhausted the information collection,” explains Riehl. “Noah and I have made all of the music to have the ability to permit future songwriters to create all their music.”