Non-Fungible Tokens are disrupting industries across the board. As art continues to dominate the NFT scene, other industries are working on joining the hype. The music industry is stepping up to the plate with a variety of artists and platforms launching their own NFTs as a way to connect with their fans. While some people are still wrapping their heads around what NFTs are, the music industry is setting up for a disruption in how we collect and share our favorite genres, artists and albums.
You may be asking yourself “What is an NFT?” NFT stands for non-fungible token. It’s a token with a unique digital identification number that sits on the blockchain representing anything from art to music to the deed to your house.
The benefits of purchasing a music NFT include not only the album art but the corresponding audio file and other exclusive perks defined by the artists. Music NFTs offer a wealth of creative freedom for artists and exclusive experiences to those that collect them.
Some artists, like DJ Justin Blau (a.k.a. 3lau) sold $20 million worth of NFTs when he teamed up with artist Mike Parisella to create animated videos based on his album, Ultraviolet. The Kings of Leon led an initiative called “NFT Yourself” which offered special perks like front-row seats to live, in-person shows and exclusive audio/visual art.
Music NFTs help bring artists and fans together. By offering perks like exclusive interviews, special seating, Q&A’s, etc. to NFT owners, musicians are able to interact with their fans in more meaningful ways. An additional benefit is cutting out the middleman, which allows artists to sell their work directly to consumers.
While the rise of streaming music has given consumers the ability to listen to their favorite artists at any time for a flat monthly fee, artists have been left behind. Platforms keep about 30% of the revenue, and after the music publisher and record label take their share, not much is left for the musician themselves. With music NFTs, there’s no middleman involved, enabling the artist to collect more profit from their hard work.
Lin Dai, founder of music NFT platform OneOf, said in a recent edition of Cryptonized, “Michael Jackson, before he passed, could have autographed one OneOf copy of Thriller, and I could be the only one holding that and that has value; this is just a digital version.” OneOf has done several initiatives so far, including “the Doja Cat One of One item out of our collection option for $188,000.08 188,” adds Lin.
“The winner gets the actual NFT itself and a VIP experience to go see her in concert. We’ll fly the winner first class anywhere in the US to a concert, and they also get a full day of living like Doja Cat; maybe they go to the recording studio where the songs were made and they get to dine at her favorite restaurant, and then they go to the concert. A VIP experience.”
When Lin approached Quincy Jones, one of the earlier adopters of Spotify, Jones immediately realized the potential for artists, saying “NFTs are more important than what streaming technology has done for the music industry.”
To quote Lin, “This is something that fundamentally allows the artist to monetize without collateralizing their future. [With] the current revenue model, artists’ recording revenue is signed away.
So this is like something that artists can do and really have a one-on-one relationship directly with their fans without having to collateralize any part of their career.” The power and potential of NFTs are limitless, and the music industry is primed for the DeFi revolution.