Artists who are just trying their hand at this field should understand that this is a game of a decade, not a fad for a few months.

Unfortunately, in the last year, some artists, in the wake of the NFT hype, came and dumped tokens to their fans. Looking at the experience of a platform like Nifty Gateway, some of the biggest names in the music industry were dropping and then just give up on it and not interacting with the NFT owners in any way. It is easy to see a trend in sales in the secondary market.

How to release your music NFT and how it works

Planning is key. Khaliq Mol gives this advice to artists hosting their first NFT drop:

"The first drop is very important for creating the atmosphere of your world. I think the best advice is to plan everything to the end as well as possible. Understand what story you want to tell and make sure you convey it to the audience in the best possible way. I think ideally that's where the value lies: focusing on the core idea and building on it."

It is worthwhile to study in advance and the legal consequences. Indie and uncontracted artists are very active in this space because there are far fewer legal complexities.

As Disclosure explained, digital goods are increasingly subject to major label contracts:

"If you're an indie artist right now and major labels want to sign you, then you need to think 100 times. Or at least look carefully at the part of the contract that deals with NFT... or if the contract doesn't have the part about NFT, make sure to add it."

How to release your music NFT and how it works

Finally, it is very important to understand what the super fans want the most.

“My best advice for artists dealing with their release is to identify the part of their song list that they can effectively use based on the audience's pre-existing mood". Harris Cole

  • Make sure the drop is well thought out so you can make a splash. The first NFT drop can only be done once;
  • It is very important to make sure that there is a story behind your NFT that comes with it. Make sure your NFT matches your brand;
  • If possible, include something extra, be it show access, Discord chat, or even physical exclusive merch/vinyls. But ultimately, the focus should be on the NFT itself, not the extra perks;

Now we see a lot of NFT releases that are aimed solely at obtaining momentary benefits. Think long term.

Contract

Although experimental in nature, DAO labels can become promising new structures for talent development. Dreams Never Die, Good Karma Records and HiFi Labs are dedicated to developing artists and music businesses using the latest web3 tools and community building strategies.

Creator-led DAOs are starting to have a tangible impact on artists willing to work in a new field. The Songcamp Artists Guild has teamed up to create a musical NFT adventure game. SongCamp musicians and artists raised 40 ETH to create an NFT portal called Elektra, which requires an NFT ticket to enter.

How to release your music NFT and how it works

In addition to this, Songcamp funds experimental groups where artists can collaborate, create art and web3 products such as BPM, a music bot for Discord.

Likewise, MusicFund is an NFT community for finding, funding, and curating music. Friends With Benefits (FWB) has established itself as an effective community of artists. The popular DAO has launched a scholarship and philanthropy program to support creative people, and the grants are led by Pat Locke, an electronic music artist whose work has been sold on Catalog and Sound.

Audius, ModaDAO and Metaplex are working to bring crypto incentives to music streaming, licensing and merchandising. Not Spotify yet, but Audius already boasts over 6 million unique monthly users.

How to release your music NFT and how it works

What exactly will the development of musical NFTs bring?
At first glance it looks like just another tool in the artist's arsenal for creating collectibles, mementos and merchandise, but with the added versatility of software. As Matthew Haim pointed out, the subtle but significant difference is that NFTs give artists control over the author's canon. According to Haim, NFTs cover three factors at the same time: canon, collectibles, and copies.

In our case, a canon is a record, or an Internet source file. It is also a collectible like any other limited edition item. It is very important that the canon and collectible characteristics are maintained even when millions of people stream the exact copy on Spotify. And NFT becomes more valuable as more people listen to the copy.

But unlike the visual arts, where the general public is only exposed to Mona Lisa-level works, music is copied endlessly. Owning the "web source file" of a song may seem like a trifle - it is not legally recognized and has no guarantees.

How to release your music NFT and how it works

But it doesn't matter if enough collectors see the NFT as the canonical representation. According to Jesse Walden, once a critical mass finds a "1 to 1" NFT valuable, it will flip the copyright and increase the market value.

Technology has reduced the cost of recording, marketing, and distributing music, which has begun to tip the balance in favor of creators. But in the era of streaming services, the true wealth of artists remains out of reach.

There is a running joke in the industry that music labels employ more lawyers than marketers. For labels, the essence of the game is to extract the maximum benefit from copyright. Our opinion is that NFTs provide a kind of author's presentation, but without all this legal red tape. With NFT, artists don't have to guess when a check will arrive in the mail. Instead, payment is made instantly.

The NFT mania of 2021 has proven that crypto is the best way to monetize digital media.

It's still too early, and it could be years before technology can truly revolutionize the music industry. But there is a sense of inevitability.

Artists no longer intend to tolerate the status quo, and the movement has already begun to gain momentum.