Seems like everybody’s piling on the anti-Auto-Tune bandwagon these days. [artist id="1269"]Jay-Z[/artist] just dropped the Blueprint 3 track “D.O.A.” (which stands for “Death of Auto-Tune”), and DJs like [artist id="21435"]Funkmaster Flex[/artist] and [artist id="1579067"]Mister Cee[/artist] picked up the message over the weekend.
And while Jay’s proclamation wasn’t embraced by everyone — ahem, DJ Webstar and Jim Jones — he can definitely count on another rapper/producer in his corner: [artist id="1162"]Wyclef Jean[/artist].
On Monday, ‘Clef took to his blog to premiere “Mr. Autotune,” a dead-on parody of ‘Tuned-up hip-pop that he recorded with [artist id="1233784"]Nick Cannon[/artist].
“I’m Mr. Autotune/ If you sing off-key/ For a small fee I can make you a celebrity,” Wyclef sings on the hook.
“I wanna make money!” Cannon’s Auto-Tuned response goes.
“Then all you gotta do is pay me/ And I will turn this thing into a karaoke party/ You’ll be a superstar,” Wyclef answers.
Elsewhere in the song, Wyclef sings (bleats): “Listen to me now/ I think you got it confused/ You gotta have skills before you turn on the Auto-Tune/ So whether you wanna be a rapper or a singer/ If you gotta use the Vocoder, be an innovator.”
“Do I need singing lessons?” Cannon sorta-sings.
“Hell nah,” ‘Clef responds. “All you need is swagger/ We gon’ run it through the computer.”
And though the song is clearly a piss-take on the current state of mainstream hip-hop, Wyclef — like Jay on “D.O.A.” — seems to go to great lengths to point out that not all Auto-Tune is terrible. There are certainly “innovators” (T-Pain, Lil Wayne, Kanye West, et al) that have used the technology to do great things. What ‘Clef is taking aim at is the talentless hit-seekers who want to use Auto-Tune as a crutch.
“This song is a parody of the current craze of artists using Auto-Tune,” he writes in the blog. “But don’t get it twisted: Auto-Tune might get you a hit single for the movement, but it can never substitute for raw talent! … Here are the lyrics so everyone can sing along like we’re in a karaoke party!”