Tomorrowland's blockchain bet

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0xbabble

This is Episode #3 in my BanklessDAO Writers Genesis Cohort

A Bored Ape performing at Tomorrowland mainstage

Context:

Tomorrowland is the largest electronic music festival in the world with over 600,000 attendees. The festival has over 15 stages for artists to perform. On weekend 2, a mysterious artist with a bored ape mask performed on the biggest stage (Mainstage), and revealed his project “Ape Rave Club”. You can watch the 2-minute highlight here or the whole 1-hour set here.

What is Ape Rave Club:

A record label started by a mysterious DJ (some say it’s Bassjackers). There isn’t much information available online, except that the label wants to “bring a new generation of artists to the electronic music scene”.

Why it matters:

A prime example of how musicians can incorporate NFT IP into entertainment. Many DJs have dipped their toes into NFT & Metaverse, notable ones such as Chainsmokers, Diplo, Steve Aoki, 3lau (a topic worthy of a separate essay). Musicians earn paltry revenue from streaming platforms, so they have to create new ways to commercialize their products. In this case, the artist is getting paid; the NFT project is getting recognition and face time. The convergence of NFTs and musical performances are likely to be a big trend going forward. However, is this what the audience needs? I’m not so sure about that.

Tomorrowland’s blockchain involvement:

Last year, they created a virtual music festival that draw in over 1 million viewers. This year, they’re betting big on Web3 innovation. They have

  • teamed up with FTX (crypto exchange) to create VIP stages during Tomorrowland Winter and Tomorrowland Belgium

  • partnered with Magic Eden (NFT marketplace) to mint & trade NFTs

  • created their own NFT collections that give exclusive access to the community, art, merch, and backstage tours

Other music festivals’ blockchain moments:

  • Coachella - created NFTs that give holders lifetime access to the festival and access to exclusive areas

  • Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) - dedicated NFT gallery in the festival featuring collections from Tiësto

  • Burning Man - auctioned NFT with Sotheby’s in part of their fundraising efforts for the festival; organized a metaverse party

  • Wonderfruit - planned an NFT collection that includes IRL experiences, merch, and an impact incubator

  • Primavera Sound - gave out NFTs and cash prizes in BNB. Accepted crypto payments in 75 terminals across the festival.

  • Elrow - distributed free NFTs in augmented reality (AR) egg hunts

What people are saying:

When we first introduced the elrow family to Vatom technology, the fan response far exceeded our expectations. There is clearly a huge appetite for the immersive virtual experiences that Vatom enables, and we're excited to explore the endless ways this technology can enhance the future of music festivals and fan engagement. - Vincenc Marti of metaverse startup Vatom

Lastly, a stunning piece of concert visuals from Matteo Milleri of the techno duo Tale of Us:

Courtesy of NFT Now

In an interview with NFT Now, Matteo explained how he incorporated NFT into his shows.

We are leveraging blockchain to empower mixed-media reality, bring it to the community, and to sustain it financially.

From an audience perspective, this is a feast for the eyes. Even though combining visual art with music isn’t a new concept, I am happy to see more CG artists release cool visual NFTs for the audience’s enjoyment.

Check out his Instagram for more on music, art, and immersive realities.

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