With the ever-rising popularity of cryptocurrencies and the more-recent rise of NFTs, it was only a matter of time before rap’s best minds got involved. Earlier this year, rapper and former majority owner of streaming platform TIDAL Jay-Z, auctioned off the NFT of his debut album cover, 1996’s Reasonable Doubt for $138,600.
Other hip-hop legends have gotten involved, too. Shortly after launching an NFT collection of his own, Eminem invested in an NFT start-up called “MakersPlace” and Method Man released his own comic book series as an NFT as well.Benny the Butcher, who is *all* about business, recently announced his “Plugs I Met” NFT collection and today, it was announced that two more of hip-hop’s greatest minds, Nas and Pusha T, have invested in Audius, a streaming service built on blockchain (the same technology behind NFTs), which is set to rival the likes of Spotify, Apple Music and the aforementioned TIDAL.
And blockchain, which allows artists to get paid quicker when people stream their music, is what has attracted the two rappers, as well as a host of other investors including Steve Aoki, The Chainsmokers, Jason Derulo, Disclosure, Katy Perry and Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda.
“I believe (blockchains) might be the most important technology to ever hit the music industry,” Nas said in a statement. “Everyone who uploads to Audius can be an owner. You can’t say that about any other platform.”
Audius, which offers artists increased ownership opportunities, provides quicker payouts than other streaming services. Because of the blockchain technology, “90% of earnings from monetized streams moves to the artist in real time with 10% going to the community that keeps the streaming service running.”
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Former Sony CEO Martin Bandier who has backed Audius along with Madonna and Frank Ocean continued on to explain that blockchain will not only allow for faster payouts, but will add additional revenue streams and a greater sense of ownership.
“The blockchain is enabling entirely new revenue streams for artists and creators, like NFTs, social currency, and curation. Audius is not only using the blockchain to add potentially significant revenue streams for artists, but it also allows them to cooperatively own the platform itself,” Bandier said.
It is obviously yet to be seen whether or not Audius can compete with the major, already-established streaming platforms, but what do you think? Does this platform set to operate on new and supposedly better technology intrigue you? Or are you sticking with the Apples and Spotifys of the world? Let us know in the comments.