“Death of Auto-Tune” or “D.O.A,” the controversial introduction to Jay-Z’s “Blueprint 3” album, is sparking debate within the hip-hop community. The track, as its title makes clear, is an official Jay-Z declaration that the popular voice-altering tool Auto-Tunes needs to be retired.

In recent years, Auto-Tune has been made popular by artists like T-Pain, Lil’ Wayne and Kanye West, who’s latest album “808s & Heartbreak” used the device on every single track. While some artists, including Kanye himself, have publicly supported “D.O.A,” the song has left others less than impressed.

DJ Webstar, a producer best known for the 2006 hit “Chicken Noodle Soup,” has used Auto-Tunes on many of his recent tracks. Clearly bothered by Jay’s assertion, Webstar took to his Twitter page to pose the question “Who heard old a** Jay-Z hating?” Webstar continued on to say that “a 40 year-old can’t relate to a 17 or 22 year-old,” insinuating that Jay is out of touch with what appeals to the youth these days.

As for Jay-Z’s explanation of what prompted him to record the tune, he has said that hearing the popular tool in a fast food commercial let him know that the industry had heard enough of what he deems to be a fad. “I saw a Wendy’s commercial and they’re using Auto-Tune. They’re joking on it. It’s like, OK, enough of that … it was a trend. It was cool in the beginning. Some people made great music with it, now it’s time to move on,” the rapper said.

“Blueprint 3” is set to be released on September 11, 2009, the eight year anniversary of the original “Blueprint” release. Jay-Z recently bought out the remainder of his contract from Def Jam for a reported $5 million. “Blueprint 3” will be distributed on Roc Nation through Warner Music Group/Atlantic records. Confirmed collaborations for the album include production by Kanye West and Timbaland.

Written by Shaira B.

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