Most of us have probably seen the contraband deepfakes of Drake et al doing the rounds on TikTok and even on DSPs – though other artists like Grimes and Holly Herndon are seeing the positive side of generative AI technology. The Financial Times reported on Wednesday that Universal Music Group is in talks with Google to "license artists’ melodies and voices for songs generated by artificial intelligence.” In theory, this would be an above-board solution incorporating the original artist’s permission and a royalty payment structure in place – though no-one is commenting so far. That said, where does that leave the future of an artist’s identity if on signing a major label deal, if their own voice and sonic tone is being licensed out for others to use? That’s exactly what our FastTrack mailer editor JD and emerging artist 98 Poly chimed in with on ITV News at 10 this week. Fascinating development – let’s see where it ends up.