Music

An AI Rapper Just Signed a Major Label Deal

Capitol Records has signed AI rapper FN Meka one week after releasing its first major single for the label.

The music industry is going virtual thanks to Capitol Records’ first “robot rapper” FN Meka. To coincide with the A.I rapper’s Gunna-assisted single, “Florida Water,” the label has signed a deal with Meka.

With 10 million followers and over 1 billion views on TikTok, Music Business Worldwide reports that he’s “the first AI artist” to sign with a major label. First appearing in April 2019, Meka was originally “signed” by “virtual” record company Factory New, co-founded by Anthony Martini.

Co-produced by Turbo and DJ Holiday and in collaboration with Gunna and top Fortnite player Cody “Clix” Conrod, “Florida Water” was released last Friday (August 12). The track is available for content creators to use royalty-free on video platforms like YouTube and Twitch without the threat of demonetization or takedowns from Capitol Records. Partnering with music library SlipStream, Capitol Records says the song’s rollout will “put fans and creators in the front seat.”

Ryan Ruden, Capitol Music Group’s Executive Vice President of Experiential Marketing & Business Development told Music Business Worldwide that Meka “meets at the intersection of music, technology, and gaming culture” and “is just a preview of what’s to come.” He also called the emergence of virtual artists “a first of its kind” and an “evolution of Capitol Records’ 80-year history of innovation.”

Hear the first single from the AI rapper below.

Jaelani Turner-Williams

Jaelani Turner-Williams is a contributing news writer for Okayplayer with bylines at Billboard, MTV News, NYLON, Recording Academy and more. Read her mind on Twitter at @hernameisjae.

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