Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have officially permeated the music industry. Eminem recently bought a Bored Ape NFT for over £300,000 and discontinued filesharing brand, LimeWire, transformed itself into a music NFT marketplace.
With celebrities and brands having quickly jumped on the trend, it’s clear that NFTs are here to stay.
But why have musicians started to integrate NFTs into their work and how can they benefit from them?
Building digital communities
NFTs provide another way for musicians to connect with their fans. The exclusivity of providing digital assets grants fans a greater sense of inclusivity, connecting them with other people who’ve invested in a musician’s own collection of NFTs.
These can act as an extension of a band’s merch, allowing fans to not only have access to exclusive content and perks, but to directly engage with them — providing another avenue for artists to expand their fanbase.
By purchasing a musician’s NFT, you don’t just connect to an artist through a single experience, but through a digital link that will remain forever on a blockchain.
Supporting the work of musicians
Unfortunately, streaming services like Spotify don’t support the income of musicians in the same way that music consumption used to. The appeal of instant access to vast libraries for a small fee has meant they dominate the world of music consumption.
But NFTs support musicians by providing them with another source of income and give them greater control over their revenue streams.
The pandemic caused live music revenues to collapse by around 90%, directly impacting the income of musicians around the world. By creating their own NFTs, artists can provide themselves with another means of supporting their craft, while giving fans the opportunity to directly invest in a musician’s career.
Breaking creative boundaries
NFTs also give musicians the opportunity to break creative boundaries. They provide greater creative ownership over their ‘brand’ through creating pieces of art that can incorporate their music.
The customisation of NFTs means artists can dictate how many are produced, highlighting how rare some can be. This appeal of the rarity of NFTs has led to a great endorsement by celebrities and even boosted the popularity of the digital assets. Twitter has even created its own verification software for the use of NFT profile pictures.
The different ways in which musicians are integrating NFTs into their work is really demonstrating the power of combining this technology and artistry. But it has also proved the powers of social media in promoting new technology and the potential of NFTs for the music industry and beyond.