With the release of the new Chainsmokers album So Far So Good next week, the duo is ramping up promotion in an unorthodox way: by giving away a part of record revenues to their fans for free.
The Chainsmokers are best known for their catchy hits “Closer” and “Paris,” but they have also created a name for themselves as Web3 innovators. The most recent example is the release of their new album “So Far So Good,” which will contain a drop of 5,000 NFTs that will allow fans to share in 1% of royalties.
“We’re trying to go deeper than wider with our fan base with this new album,” said the Chainsmokers’ Drew Taggart.
This giveaway will happen via the blockchain on music NFT marketplace Royal, co-founded by musician and producer 3LAU (Justin Blau) the company lets artists sell fractional music ownership in the form of NFTs.
Blau’s platform attracted $55 million worth of investment in a funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) in November, and last month hired a high-profile Head of Global Artist & Label Partnerships: Darya Pourshasb, Spotify‘s former Director, Premium Content Strategy.
Royal claims that the move will see The Chainsmokers become the first major label artist to share royalties for an entire album for free.
In a blog post published by The Chainsmokers on why they’ve decided to partner with Royal on this giveaway, they describe LDAs as “tokens that have music rights and additional benefits embedded in them”.
Added the Chainsmokers: “The tokens will include, among other perks, a right to a proportional collective of a 1% audio streaming royalty from all 13 songs on our finished album”.
“We’ll be giving away these tokens for free to our biggest fans. Because you inspired us so much in our creation of this album, we want you to join us on its journey. They are our gift to kick-start this new modern fan community.
“A number of artists have done this in the past, but not for free,” the duo say in a statement. “It was important for us to do it this way because this isn’t about profiting off some new tech for us, it’s about connecting more deeply with you and harnessing a new disruptive technology in an effective way that truly shows what is possible as we head towards a Web3 world.”
Using NFTs on a blockchain can help bands avoid scalpers and ensure that resale earnings go to them or their fans.
In general, The Chainsmokers are among a rising number of artists who see that blockchain can give a superior alternative to traditional economic structures that include layers of attorneys and music industry middlemen.
For now, NFTs and other blockchain-based technologies are largely unproven for the music industry, a fact which The Chainsmokers are quick to acknowledge. “Everyone’s still figuring this out,” says Taggart.
Pall also joked that the duo’s Web3 ventures could also be useful if his stage appeal should decline. “I’m not going to look good in leather pants forever,” he quipped.
The drop happens via Royal on Tuesday, May 17, with the album dropping Friday, May 13. Starting at 6 p.m. EST, 4,000 tokens will be available for The Chainsmokers VIP list in phase one. An additional 700 tokens will be available in a phase two drop for The Chainsmokers VIP list and general access fans at 8:00 p.m. EST. No cryptocurrency is necessary for fans to claim one of the NFTs, and Royal will cover all associated fees.
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