Let’s be honest, the introduction of Auto-Tune changed music industry’s direction worldwide. Hailed as the largest-selling audio plug-in of all time since its initial release in 1997, many artists have taken an advantage of the audio processor and made millions from auto-tuned songs.
According to Wikipedia, Auto-Tune was originally intended to disguise or correct off-key inaccuracies, allowing vocal tracks to be perfectly tuned despite originally being slightly off-key.
This made it possible for ordinary or karaoke singers sound better than gifted vocalists such as the late Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, and the late South African gospel star Vuyo Mokoena.
Real singers who hit the notes perfectly without the helping hand of Auto-Tune are no longer guaranteed the top spot on the radio charts.
DJ Oskido, 46, real name Oscar Mdlongwa – who is the X-Factor judge – had an auto-tuned best selling song, I Believe, last year.
Another hit single that has attracted over 2 million viewers on You Tube is Tchelete by Mafikizolo and Davido.
The 21-year-old Nigerian superstar Davido, born David Adedeji Adelek – who scooped BET International Award earlier this year, beating the likes of Mafikizolo and other African stars – with the help of Auto-Tuned vocals to spice-up the song.
With the popularity of auto-tuned songs growing each year, some musicians and fans are not keen on the new direction the music has taken. Others can’t be bothered to polish their singing quality anymore. It is no surprise that some musicians went public to show their disapproval of the new trend.
In 2009, after the American rapper Jay Z, 44, released the lead single of The Blueprint 3 album titled D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune), he said he wrote the song in the personal belief that far too many people had jumped on the Auto-Tune bandwagon, and that the trend had become a gimmick
Most artists might be taking advantage of the Auto-Tune but on the plus side, there are still real vocalists who can sing without the need of Auto-Tune. Just think of the iconic Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Kelly Khumalo, Bucie Nqwiliso, Loyiso Bala, Brian Temba, Donald, J Something, Judith Sephuma, Zahara, Lira, to name a few Mzansi’s outstanding vocalists.