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Endel, UMG Team to “Reimagine” Tracks Using AI on Artists’ Stems

Berlin, Germany (May 23, 2023)—Universal Music Group and Endel, a sound wellness company, have entered a strategic relationship where Endel will apply AI to artist-provided stems to “reimagine” them, according to a statement, and create background audio soundscapes for sleeping, focusing and more.

Under the agreement, the companies will use Endel’s proprietary AI technology to enable UMG artists to create soundscapes intended to enhance listeners’ wellness. The agreement extends to both new music and new versions of catalog music. In the statement, it was noted, “The partnership will always respect creators’ rights and put artists at the center of the creative process.”

Endel previously worked with Republic Records’ artist James Blake, whose ambient “Wind Down” soundscape was released as an album in May 2022. Past collaborations also include Miguel and Grimes, among others. Under the agreement, artists and their teams have the final sign-off on the wellness results they prefer. The soundscapes are seen as potentially providing artists and rights holders new opportunities to generate additional revenue for their catalogs while expanding and enhancing their work into new areas.

Along with other types of audio, functional music represents one of the largest sub-categories of music listening worldwide, with some estimates placing it at 15 billion streams a month across all music platforms.

Oleg Stavitsky, Endel’s CEO, noted in the statement, “It’s extremely exciting to see UMG embracing artist-driven AI. Endel allows music companies like UMG to draw on the astounding capabilities of AI and functional music while respecting their artists’ rights. In that way, Endel acts more as a collaborator than a tool, giving artists control and freedom while satisfying a real market need for more music that can support their wellbeing.”