✖ Post-pandemic music scenes

And: Visualizing lyrics with AI; Apple buys Primephonic; On-chain music royalties; VISA's CryptoPunk; Kanye West; The OutKast Edge; Mood, music & investment

The ingredients of post-pandemic scenes will be an urge to move forward, a nostalgia for what existed before, and the integration of methods of resilience in the new status quo for music.

In this post I explore:

  • How new informal networks are defining cities’ music landscapes

  • The tension between nostalgia & moving on

  • Why scenes will reunite with plague ravers

  • Plus, of course, the web3’s role in all this

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Heads up. I’m out for the next few weeks, but I’m leaving you in great hands. Maarten will be sending out the Thursday editions as usual. Next Tuesday we’ll have a guest edition by the CO:QUO collective. I’m really excited to read it with an espresso from, a hopefully sunny, Venice, Italy. ☕


🏠 Visualizing lyrics with AI-generated visuals (@shoegazerstella)

Cool idea and easy to see how an artists whose projects are very lyrics driven could leverage something like this to generate NFTs to bootstrap a community around their work.

Programmable collateral: bringing music royalties on-chain (Jack Spallone)

“The problem has been that payments have not been on-chain and artists didn’t have identity on-chain. Paperchain has now augmented legacy payment systems to realize on-chain royalty payments for music - in a way that bridges legacy media to web3 layers.”

💸 3LAU launches blockchain music investment company backed by paradigm and Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund (Nina Bambysheva)

“Royal aims to democratize access to music ownership by letting users not only invest in but also own rights to their favorite songs and albums through limited edition, autographed digital assets recorded on a to-be-decided blockchain.”

I think this project has a lot of merits, but will place a question mark with getting someone like Thiel involved when there are so many other avenues for fundraising.

💳 Nifty Corporates (Packy McCormick)

“Already, the CryptoPunks floor, the lowest price you could pay to buy a CryptoPunk, has nearly tripled to 134 ETH. On paper, VISA has gained $270k from its marketing investment.”

🎻 Apple acquires classical music streaming service Primephonic (Tim Ingham)

“Its new dedicated Apple Music Classical experience will offer “the best features of Primephonic, including better browsing and search capabilities by composer and by repertoire, detailed displays of classical music metadata, plus new features and benefits”.”


🚢 The world is still short of everything. Get used to it. (Peter S. Goodman and Keith Bradsher)

“Some trade experts suggest that product shortages are now being exacerbated by rational reactions to recent events. Because of the pandemic, humanity now knows the fear of running out of toilet paper. That experience may be driving consumers and businesses to order more and earlier than previously needed.”

0️⃣ Kanye West review, Donda: Marilyn Manson’s inexcusable presence leaves a sour taste that no amount of gospel can cleanse (Roisin O'Connor)

“West is evidently surrounded by a team who are too scared or too exhausted to say ‘no’, but it speaks volumes of society’s apathy towards rape survivors that Universal would release this album with Manson on it.”

📊 Mood, music and money: what our Spotify playlists reveal about the emotional nature of financial markets (The Conversation)

“Linking our sentiment measure with the stock markets, we find that higher music sentiment is associated with higher returns to a country’s stock market during the same week. It also leads to lower returns the next week, suggesting the initial reaction was a temporary one driven by sentiment.”

🎤 The OutKast Edge: How slept-on trends build a following and maintain their unique edge (Dan Runcie)

“This isn’t about randomly catching fire and stumbling into a thriving audience. This is about the person you don’t know today but has a small and loyal following. But when they do pop, get ready. The groundwork will already be set. We’ll look back and see that they had the OutKast Edge all along.”

'Make Music Equal' Is Our Data-Driven Initiative to Advance Gender Equity in the Music Industry (Chartmetric)

“Our inaugural database features self-defined pronoun and gender data (in addition to genre and artist country data) for 490K+ artists worldwide, and it's available for download at makemusicequal.chartmetric.com.”


I’m speaking about resilience through community at the Music Innovation Hub in Milan this Thursday, 10am. There’s a livestream. Pre-register here.


Nihiloxica is a live project that harnesses the full force of the ancient Bugandan drumming tradition of Uganda and focuses it on the contemporary dancefloor through a dark, brooding lens of techno sensibility. What a journey their album Kaloli is.