Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Allow us to introduce you to 2019's hottest new artist: the auto-tune cat

Photo: Michael Tullberg (Getty Images)

Cats have long inspired musicians, but, hungry for more than just tuna treats, our furry friends are now posting their very own songs on the internet. With a little help from an auto-tune program, one kitty has padded into music history, marking the boldest new feline genre since The Jingle Cats rocketed up the holiday charts so many years ago.

Disney artist Joaquin Baldwin, tired of his buddy Elton meowing away in the morning, ushered us into this new era by turning the insistent cries of his little dude into a freeform, T-Pain-inspired jam.


Baldwin and Elton have not hoarded the secrets of their artistic process. He shared the name of the app that transforms cat vocals into such sweet music, showed off one more Elton remix, and then let the internet take over from there.

The remixes have been coming fast ever since. Elton is now featured on dark, brooding instrumentals.


As well as on more sedate tracks.


Along the way, Elton’s grown a following not only from human listeners, but also his own species. While we can only appreciate the raw sound of his lyrics, something in the cat language Elton warbles speaks to his people. There is raw charisma in his voice, and it’s awakening all pets who hear it.


As with all enormously successful singles, Elton is now in the difficult position of having to follow his first drop with something more substantial. The remixes are landing and the image of his adorable striped face is everywhere. If Elton doesn’t capitalize on this moment, he may fall back into obscurity, sitting idly by the water bowl years from now wondering where it all went wrong. Thankfully, Baldwin seems to understand the gravity of his role in all of this. Auto-tune cat part two is inevitable. Don’t fuck up your shot, Elton.


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About the author

Reid McCarter

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Reid's a writer and editor who has appeared at GQ, Playboy, and Paste. He also co-created and writes for videogame sites Bullet Points Monthly and Digital Love Child.