Billy Strings Responds to Fan Uproar

Strings' fans grew upset over some alleged AI-generated artwork on the musician's merchandise.

Billy Strings has responded to a fan uproar over some alleged AI-generated artwork on his new merchandise line. Jambase reports that, around New Year's Eve, some of Strings' social media followers were commenting on newly designed shirts, and other items, from the bluegrass musician's merch collection. A fan created the artwork and many believe that the individual used an AI program to generate it rather than by hand or graphic design.

Seeing this — Jamebase noted — Strings hoped online and directly addressed the situation. "I'm pretty hands on with the art, I try to approve everything, but with everything going on and all the shows and stuff, I mean there is times where I just maybe have been a little complacent," Strings said. "This is a big lesson that I'm learning. I saw these designs come through and I was kind of just like, yeah sure, why not. You know, it's New Year's Eve, it's like one event, so sure, it seemed like cool enough designs to me."

Strings went on to explain, "We have fans that make really cool art and they submit it a lot of times and we haven't really used very much of it, but I've always wanted to because they make some really cool shit, cooler shit than we could even think of sometimes." The Grammy winner then made it clear that he and his team were working to get to the bottom of the situation. "I reached out to my manager and said, 'what's going on here?' It's like, 'is this AI?' And my manager showed me the correspondence between him and this artist, where this guy was saying that he drew it from a line drawing from a sketch, and that he thought it up in his own brain," Strings said.

"From what I can tell, we don't have what we need yet to prove that this isn't AI," Strings said. "So I just want you all to know that if these t-shirts are AI, then I'm going to have to kick this dude in the pecker. And we were ripped off. I would never sign off on something like that. I, if anything, I've been trying to get our merch stuff to get more...hand drawn, more pencils, more painting, you know, less computer kind of generated stuff anyways."