Since its development in 1997, Auto-Tune has made its way into almost every genre of music. While the talkbox and vocoder give songs a retro feel, Auto-Tune was originally used on futuristic pop hits. In 1998, Cher’s “Believe” was one of the first commercial recordings to use the effect. In 1999 Jennifer Lopez released her No. 1 hit “If You Had My Love.” Inspired by J. Lo, T-Pain took Auto-Tune to the next level.
On his 2005 debut, T-Pain used it to distort his vocals, rather than just pitch-correct them. In 2007, Snoop Dogg embraced the effect on “Sexual Eruption.” In 2008, Lil Wayne adopted the technique for ‘Tha Carter III.’ Later that year, Kanye dropped his Auto-Tuned ‘808s & Heartbreak.’ But then in 2009, JAY-Z announced his desire to kill the effect with “D.O.A. (Death Of Auto-Tune).” Since then, there have been protests… but the effect has persevered.