For years, there has been a thriving market for streaming service accounts, with Spotify accounts selling for under a dollar. Many though not all of these are hacked. It’s so common that people commenting on their hackers’ music tastes has become somewhat of a meme and a quick search on Twitter pulls up countless examples.
How completely has streaming transformed the music world? The platform rose from 7% of the U.S. market in 2010 to a whopping 83% by the end of 2020 — and recorded-music revenues saw their fifth consecutive year of growth, topping $12.2 billion. It’s no overstatement to say that streaming saved the recorded-music business, and that global market leader Spotify led the charge toward the stability and growth that the industry is enjoying today.
Live Nation Entertainment and livestream platform Veeps have started equipping over 60 concert venues across the United States with live streaming technology. Los Angeles-based Veeps was established in 2017 by Joel and Benji Madden of the band Good Charlotte, who sold a stake in their company to Live Nation in January.
The man who once auctioned off the most expensive artwork in history, Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, for $450.3 million, is auctioning his first NFT on his app for fine art collectors, a 3D animation of an egg and a lighter modelled by contemporary artist Urs Fischer.
International art group Instigators is launching its inaugural NFT art project to explore how artworks can move from traditional galleries into the world of blockchain technology. “This is the first attempt of its kind, whereby we can track the path of an artwork from the hall of a museum into the cryptoworld — and in doing so, putting the issue of copies and originals at the heart of our discussion,” Koshelev says.
Playboy—which ceased regular print publication in 2020—plans to tap into its 67-year archive of classic photography and artwork, as well as collaborate with modern artists on fresh creations to sell as crypto collectibles. The brand also intends to offer grants to “support emerging and underrepresented artists entering the NFT art community,” according to a release.
Amid all the recent backlash against NFTs, the real and exciting possibilities that blockchain technology offers for solving longstanding flaws in the art market could be lost. The great promise of blockchain is something more than just letting people buy and sell digital art. This new technology holds the potential to give artists of all kinds equity in their work.
Chris McGarry, who previously led music integration at Facebook’s Oculus, is taking a new approach to bringing music into the virtual world with his startup Authentic Artists. McGarry pointed to virtual celebrities like Lil Miquela and virtual concerts like Travis Scott’s giant event in Fortnite as setting the stage for Authentic Artists.
Twenty-seven years after the death of Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, his sound is continuing on thanks to artificial intelligence software. Lost Tapes of the 27 Club is a musical project that utilizes AI to analyze up to 30 songs per selected musician who struggled with mental health issues and died at the age of 27 — including Cobain, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison and Amy Winehouse — and write and perform “new” songs in their signature style as part of one album.
This month sees the launch of Stack Radio, an app that deliberately delivers music chosen by someone else, while for the adventurous a more eccentric service, Trade Journal Cooperative, is offering to send a different niche publication direct to your door four times a year, from Professional Pasta to American Funeral Director or Plumber Magazine.