10 Dance Music Led Blockchain Projects
Apr 27, 2022
10 min read
In the substantially complicated ecosystem of music labels, publishers, distributors, and royalty collectors, the idea of artists getting paid quickly may sound like a revolutionary concept.
Now broaden that thought experiment to a more extensive ecosystem. What if we could create a new financial system for music that can support real-time revenue streams and ultimately hand much more power to the individual artist? Several innovative blockchain-based projects are taking this on. Dance music has always been tech-forward. And many artists have entered the crypto space with designs of making space for increased earning power, more direct fan interaction, and leaving behind systems that don’t favor the kind of revolutionary creativity that made dance music possible.
These projects make it possible for artists to get paid for their art easier, faster and choose how they want the rights to their creative content to be distributed. In addition, they let the greater community peek under the hood in the studio, offering an inside look at future projects, be they music or merch. Fans can now contribute directly to these future projects without a record label in the middle. And they hope to reduce reliance on third-party ticketing platforms and the exorbitant fees that come with them.
How cryptocurrency works, in a nutshell
In 2008 Satoshi Nakamoto gave birth to Bitcoin— which officially introduced the first cryptocurrency. The first official Bitcoin transaction happened in 2010 when Florida resident Laszlo Hanyecz paid 10,000 BTC for two pizzas. Over a decade later, Bitcoin's value hit a record high in January 2021 when one BTC became worth more than 40,000 USD, meaning those pizzas would cost $400 million by today's standards.
Cryptocurrency materialized out of widespread distaste for society's bank-reliant money model. Essentially, it ensures average citizens can have complete control over their funds without government interference.
The most important part is the operation on a blockchain, which eliminates double-spending. The blockchain is a publicly accessible, transparent ledger. When a person makes a transaction, it creates a data "block" that houses the sender and recipients' addresses — a unique transaction ID — and a timestamp.
Those blocks form a digital chain as transactions continue. They cannot be edited. And once someone participates, their computer begins keeping a copy of the blockchain. That means — say, in the case of Bitcoin (or any other crypto)— any hacking attempt would be immediately flagged, thanks to the hundreds of thousands of computers that are now keeping track of and updating Bitcoin's decentralized blockchain.
These days, Bitcoin is just one of many forms of usable cryptocurrency. And there are also non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which can hold unique assets like art, tickets, or trademarks instead of money.
According to music's cryptocurrency enthusiasts, all these things are possible — a growing group of tech-obsessed entrepreneurs with the common goal of applying the technology of blockchain and bitcoin to the multibillion-dollar global business of selling albums. Crypto advocates want to continue engineering new financial systems for music that can support real-time revenue streams and ultimately hand much more power to the individual artist.
We’ve pulled together a list of our top picks for crypto projects led by those in dance music.
Built by established DJs, producers, agents, and many more key players in the industry, RCRDSHP is a digital collectibles platform launched earlier this year to transform our experience with electronic music.
RCDRDSHP works to surprise its users by curating and dropping digital content known as a "pack." In the background, the system is validated by blockchain and non-fungible tokens. The packs contain collectible content that can be bought and sold, listened to, watched, or combined with game mechanics to unlock new premium collectibles and real-life experiences. Learn more about the project here.
WAX MOTIF- $WAXM
Wax Motif was one of the first in the scene to recognize the power crypto holds to create unique direct-to-fan relationships. He launched his social token known as $WAXM in 2020. WAX coin allows users to engage directly with him in various ways, from meet and greets to production workshops. His ever-growing Discord has forever challenged the way he sees the community that coalesces around him.
As part of the $WAXM experience, there are three different limited-edition NFT creations, two of which could only be acquired by scanning a QR code at a specific live event. The last of his three NFT creations is only awarded to the "OG $WAXM holders," which shows how NFTs and social tokens engage an artist's community both in-person and digitally. Effectively, Wax Motif has continued to establish new sources of revenue that exist within the crypto economy.
Learn more about $WAXM here.
XLR8R is launching a platform for independent artists to create, mint, and auction NFT tokens. In collaboration with NFT platform partner Cargo, they plan to launch a curated NFT marketplace dedicated to electronic music. This will allow artists and labels to create, market, and sell NFTs, thereby placing the control of art back into the hands of the creators, allowing them to be paid directly for their work in perpetuity. Learn more about XLR8R here.
Djenerates is a music NFT project created by a fantastic crew who live and breathe the electronic music scene. Founded by celebrated NFT producer Hipworth and backed by heavy hitters such as Bedouin, Blond:ish, Giorgia Angiuli, Maceo Plex, and some of the leading electronic music brands. This has allowed fans to access some of the most exclusive clubs globally and metaverse events, limited edition NFT's from leading artists, including swag and other signed collectible items.
Read more about the project here.
Created by a small group of DJs, music lovers, and experts from across the music industry, CryptoDJs allows fans to engage with their favorite artists, including Pig&Dan, Christian Smith, Simina Grigoriu, Victor Ruiz, and Mark Reeve. They have built individual access to exclusive communities and content through collectible NFTs in the form of digital cards. Each card is unique, and 10% of the cards feature exclusive audio tracks, adding rarity value to the tradeable.
The more you build your collection, the more you earn access rewards to exclusive experiences and content by acquiring pre-designed card combinations. Different combinations will unlock bespoke opportunities. Some of these experiences include backstage passes, meet and greets, concert passes, and more.
Check it out here.
Don Diablo’s Hexcoin
Dutch DJ and producer Don Diablo used the Gaze Coin platform to launch his cryptocurrency token, Hexcoin, named after his record label Hexagon. Gaze Coin, also known as the GZE token, is a currency and platform that provides artificial virtual reality creators a trackable recovery on investment by awarding audiences for viral content.
Don Diablo will be using Hexcoin (HXG Coin) for his platform as a currency for people to access content from his label. The coin offers rewards by tracking what you watch. The longer you watch content, the more monetary value it provides the content creator.
For additional details about Hexcoin, you can visit the website here.
Emanate is a network marketplace built for music lovers and creators. Its strength is that immediate payments and automated technology drive it, Emanate connects players in the music industry in a way never before seen.
Powered on the backend by Web3 technology, the platform manages the entire journey of music creation, distribution, promotion, and monetization. What’s unique about this platform is that everyone can earn, not just artists, and they have a rocking referral program. Emanate shares payments for popular playlists you create. As well as provides micro rewards for music discovery and curation and time-limited earnings for simply listening to new music.
This is a music lover's dream! Learn more about this robust platform here.
EDM DanceCoin (EDMC) is the first of its kind utility fan token built by electronic music lovers for electronic music lovers. The tokens are housed with a Dutch foundation that organizes and manages the fundraising. The foundation also provides sponsorship and financial support for various festivals and projects.
The ecosystem of this system supports not only the commercial music industry, live music venues and festivals. It also includes music education, health, and wellness through music and the economic supply chain that makes music happen, front and backstage.
Check out this worthwhile project in full here.
Dance music tastemaker Dirtybird is opening the doors to its own Web3 nightclub, Birdhain, in its metaverse, Birdyverse. Based on the famous Berlin nightclub Berghain, it's an all-hours virtual nightclub with DJ sets running every day and night. The Birdyverse at large is open to anyone with a cryptocurrency wallet, like MetaMask, but you must hold a Dirtybird Flight Club NFT to join Birdhain. Once entered, users will be able to wander, chat, scour, and interact with the mysterious island shaped like a cracked egg.
To join the Birdyverse, log in here and connect your Crypto wallet. You can read more on the Birdyverse in this interview with Claude Von Stroke over at Resident Advisor.
As the streaming landscape competition continues to get more competitive between the largest streaming platforms, finding competitive advantages to drive paid subscribers has never been more complex. Audius is a platform that uses blockchain technology to offer clarity and transparency for artists. Artists can upload their music and have an immutable record of owning that content. If the content is misused, musicians can easily prove ownership of the intellectual property and take the appropriate measures to stop it from being used without their authorization.
It also gives musicians more control regarding the monetization of their work and enables them to connect with fans directly. Check out the inner workings of the platform here.
Editors Note: Using blockchain technology in this way is not without its issues. While Audius claims to be solving ownership problems, that hasn't stopped users from uploading copyright-infringing content from major labels. As noted in a 2019 piece by Dani Deahl for The Verge, "the company confirmed to The Verge that there is no content ID system in place to catch potential infringement. Though individual uploaders can be held liable for infringement, there’s no way for Audius to remove infringing material, and there is also no way to file an infringement claim on the website."