Web3 streaming services and NFT music marketplaces In recent years, marketing models have evolved. Indeed, the rise of Web3 and the growing popularity of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has shifted the entire creative economy. It’s also about time. The music industry generates approximately $43 billion in revenue, but only 12% of that goes to artists. When it came to Web3 music, we needed new models and options.
While many people continue to use Spotify or Apple Music for many of their audio needs, a few incredibly powerful Web3 streaming platforms and NFT marketplaces have emerged in recent years and taken the world by storm. These platforms are especially beneficial to independent artists because they provide powerful new ways to build community, share music, and even receive payment in cryptocurrency on the blockchain.
Peer-to-peer (P2P) interactions are increased by the decentralized infrastructure of Web3 streaming services and NFTs in particular. By doing so, these technologies assist independent artists in regaining control of their art — and compensation — by eliminating middlemen who currently have complete control, such as Spotify and Apple Music. If you need proof that the music industry is in desperate need of new models, look at the image below for an overview of how Web 2.0 streaming services compensate artists.
Web3 streaming services and music NFTs are becoming increasingly popular, and early adopters stand to benefit significantly. As a result, while it’s still unclear whether these Web3 streaming platforms and NFTs will overtake legacy services like Spotify or Apple Music, it makes sense for active producers, musicians, and vocalists to look into these options now.
Here are some Web3 streaming services and NFT music marketplaces to keep an eye on.
Web3 Streaming Services:
Audius, which launched near the end of 2019, has one goal: to become the go-to Web3 streaming and sharing platform by restoring power to content creators. The platform is made up of a completely decentralized music streaming protocol built on public blockchain infrastructure. This is meant to give artists more insight into who is streaming their music and more control over how their tracks are distributed.
Artists can distribute their music for free, and the team promises that it will always be free for artists. Furthermore, unlike most other music streaming services, Audius does not take a cut of the revenue generated by artists. The team described the Audius mechanics in their whitepaper. It is made up of:
- The Audius platform token ($AUDIO), third-party stablecoins, and artist tokens power this token economy.
- A decentralized storage solution and ledger for audio and metadata sharing
- A track encryption scheme combined with a programmable mechanism for releasing user-specific proxy re-encryption keys for content.
- A metadata discovery protocol that allows users to efficiently query metadata.
- A decentralized governance protocol in which artists, node operators, and fans are individually and collectively empowered to vote on protocol changes and upgrades.
Emanate, like Audius, is a blockchain-powered music streaming platform. It is based on EOSIO and accepts payments with its $EMT token. The EMT token and the internal stable token both run on the EOS main net, and payments can be tracked using EOS main net block explorers like Bloks.io and EOSX.io.
One significant distinction between Emanate and Audius is that Emanate pays artists in its native token per stream, whereas Audius currently only uses the rewards system for artists to earn cryptocurrency. Emanate also offers a $6 monthly membership to the Emanate Music Lovers group. For every $6 that the company receives, $5 is distributed to the artists.
Musicians can either do it themselves and upload and promote their tracks, or they can use Emanate Distro. Artists who upload music to Emanate can use Emanate Distro to push audio and data to services such as Spotify and Soundcloud. All revenue is routed back into the Emanate ecosystem, where it is possible to track all revenue and payments. The team hopes to eventually depreciate Emanate Distro in favor of artists have complete control over their work via the Emanate platform.
However, they note that it is impossible to eliminate all existing middlemen overnight, so the company will provide this service as they transition to Web3 streaming services accelerates.
OPUS is a music hosting, discovery, and listening platform that is decentralized. The Ethereum blockchain is used by the platform, and tracks are stored on the Interplanetary File System (IPFS). Using IPFS, the platform can deliver thousands of tracks per second in a completely decentralized manner. Finally, users listen to music via smart contracts, which contain the decryption keys and file hashes, according to the company. Furthermore, smart contracts allow users to compensate musicians for their work.
According to the company, OPUS allows artists to keep 90% of the money they earn. “Because the OPUS Player is built on the Ethereum blockchain and all tracks are stored on IPFS, there is no need for a central server, lowering storage costs dramatically.” This allows for more revenue to be directed directly to the artist in a more secure and transparent manner than ever before,” they explained.
The platform can also provide financial benefits to fans. How? Users are compensated with royalties for creating playlists that help spread music across the platform.
SongCamp created the BPM music NFT Discord bot. It is essentially a music streaming bot that can be installed on a Discord server and used to play music NFTs generated by Catalog, Zora, Sound, and other services.
Although BPM isn’t a traditional streaming platform and requires a track to already be minted as an NFT in order to stream it, it can be a useful tool for getting your music heard by the right people. Inquire about onboarding BPM with the moderators of your favorite Discord server. Here’s a rundown of what you’ll need to get started.
NFT Music Marketplaces
NFT marketplaces make it simple for artists to create NFTs that include songs or entire albums. These music NFTs can then be sold directly to fans without the use of a middleman. New NFT marketplaces appear nearly every month, giving musicians a plethora of options when it comes to minting a piece of music.
NFT Music Marketplaces In General:
When selecting a marketplace, consider whether you intend to mint one NFT and sell it at auction or mint a collection of NFTs that are each individually priced. Consider OpenSea and Rarible for collection management. These are two of the world’s largest NFT marketplaces. OpenSea is simple to use and does not charge listing or minting fees. It follows a standard marketplace model, with a 2.5 percent cut of all transactions. For all secondary marketplace sales, creators can add a kick-back royalty of up to 10%. List your NFT on OpenSea if you want to get your work in front of as many people as possible at no cost.
Rarible is a multichain marketplace that allows you to mint coins on the Ethereum, Flow, and Tezos blockchains. Rarible is the first NFT marketplace that is community-based. The platform, like OpenSea, allows for the minting of batch NFTs.
Platforms like SuperRare, Foundation, and Zora are your best bet if you want to mint one NFT. Again, each marketplace we’ve listed so far will walk you through the minting process from beginning to end. However, not all are created equal, particularly in the case of Foundation and SuperRare, where Foundation requires users to obtain an invitation to join the platform and SuperRare requires potential minters to go through an application process with a waitlist that is typically a few months long.
And be aware that minting has an initial cost. Most of the time, you’ll only have to pay a gas fee (transaction fee) to mint, but marketplaces may tack on additional fees. And even if the costs aren’t obvious at first, you may end up paying fees later on.
OpenSea: There is no minting fee; simply pay for gas. It deducts 2.5 percent of the final sale price.
Rarible: No minting fee, no gas fee. It deducts 2.5 percent of the final sale price.
SuperRare: There is no minting fee; just pay for gas. Takes 3% of every final sale
No minting fee, just pay for gas. Takes 15% of final sales prices
Zora: No fees, just pay for gas. There is no sales commission.
NFT Marketplaces Dedicated To Music
On Catalog, you can add a record to the open music library (which you can listen to for free), set a “buy it now” price, list it in a reserve auction, or accept a collector’s offer. Artists receive 100% of their initial sales as well as a creator share when their records are resold. Furthermore, artists control the resale price they receive. However, the platform is currently only accessible by invitation. It is likely that this will continue for some time because the platform is run by a small team and onboarding takes time. Artists can still fill out the Catalog submission form to be added to the waitlist.
Sound.XYZ is a streaming service that also offers minting and community listening. On Sound, artists can use a limited edition NFT to launch a listening party for new song releases. Every day, listening parties take place, and nearly every collection has sold out since the platform’s first drop. What’s more, the best part? Artists are entitled to keep all of the proceeds from the sale. The platform is still in beta testing. It is currently invite-only, similar to Catalog. If you’re desperate to get your music on the Sound marketplace, try contacting one of the platform’s established artists or joining the Sound Discord server.
Music That Is Asynchronous:
Async Music is the music-focused division of the well-known NFT platform Async Art. Each track that makes up a song (guitar, piano, vocals, percussion) is uploaded separately and in multiple versions on Async Music. This enables artists to mint music in a dynamic manner, with layers that merge to form a single master track. Because these tracks are randomly compiled in a master NFT, songs on the platform can change composition, which means they may sound different each time a user returns to listen. However, the platform does not currently support open minting. It’s also complicated and not for the faint of heart.
3LAU’s new music NFT marketplace, Royal, grants NFT owners rights to songs sold on the platform. Currently, the platform is highly curated, with 3LAU and his team hand-picking each artist and song that appears on the site. While Royal is not yet available for minting, the platform’s LDAs (Limited Digital Assets, also known as royalty-bearing NFTs) are definitely worth learning about.