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New York Times on the marketing of SongSmith

Randall Stross devotes his Digital Domain column in the Business section of the Sunday New York Times to a look at the ham-handed marketing of SongSmith, based on work from Dan Morris and Sumit Basu from Microsoft Research and UW CSE graduate student Ian Simon that generates instrumental accompaniment to match users’ vocal input.

A four-minute video promoting the product has been the target of derision, attracting (at this writing) more than half a million views and several thousand comments.  But hey, buzz is buzz!

Stross notes the emergence a new genre of parody video, where YouTube content mashers feed the vocals from famous rock videos into SongSmith, remix the generated instrumentals with the vocals, and replace the audio with what, in combination, kills the buzz dead. An example.

We previously covered SongSmith here.

January 25, 2009