Hozier would contemplate a strike over AI's threat to the music industry

Hozier stated that he would consider going on strike if artificial intelligence (AI) posed a threat to his industry. Actors and writers in Hollywood are presently on strike over a dispute over better contracts and protection from the use of artificial intelligence.

Hozier informed sources that he would be prepared to participate in a similar strike in the music industry. The musician added that he was uncertain whether AI "meets the definition of art." First time in decades, Hollywood writers and actors formed picket lines in July.

The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers' proposal to retain "digital replicas" of actors was among their concerns.

However, musicians have yet to acknowledge the peril AI poses to their own industry. The technology could be used to compose music or imitate famous artists.

In April, a song that utilized artificial intelligence to clone the vocals of Drake and The Weeknd was removed from streaming services in response to accusations that it violated copyright laws.

Hozier, whose true identity is Andrew John Hozier-Byrne, was questioned if he could envisage going on strike in response to the threat posed by artificial intelligence to the music industry. He responded “Joining in solidarity if there was... action on that? Without a doubt."

The Grammy-nominated singer, who is best known for his song Take Me to Church, told presenter Victoria Derbyshire that it's almost a philosophical debate whether [AI is] art or not.

Hozier discussed the passing of fellow Irish singer-songwriter Sinéad O'Connor during his interview. The singer reflected that he was walking on this road that she paved" after she tore up a portrait of the Pope on US television in 1992 to protest child sexual abuse within the Catholic Church. Her actions were initially widely condemned.

Three decades later, Hozier's debut single Take Me to Church, which he claimed criticized the church's teaching of "shame about sexual orientation", led the rankings in twelve countries and is still the thirty most streamed song ever.

Hozier stated that his début single's "mission statement" is "more relevant now than it was a decade ago." "I'm not thrilled with this, but I believe it's more applicable in some ways... Ten years ago, there were no LGBTQ+-free zones in the European Union,” he said.

When asked if he would ever perform in Russia, Saudi Arabia, or other countries where minorities are oppressed, the artist characterized the issue as "tricky."

"Do we not repress minorities in this country? Or in America?" he inquired, revealing that he had declined an invitation to a Russian government-sponsored event.

"I was once invited to perform in the Vatican, which was a fascinating experience... I believe they invited me to sing "Take Me to Church" at one point." "And you said no?" Derbyshire inquired. "Oh, yes. That would have been entertaining, Hozier joked.

Prior to the release of his new album Unreal Unearth, the musician gave his only UK television interview to Newsnight. The album, which was partially inspired by Dante's Inferno and the artist's experience with the pandemic, will be released on August 18.