Grammys 2022: NFT, topic of debate between musicians and industry experts

The multi-billion dollar music industry has recently shown interest in non-fungible tokens (NFTs), as musicians around the world are beginning to understand the power of moving away from centralized business models.

This concept is being demonstrated by early innovators such as popular rapper Snoop Dogg, who recently acquired Death Row Records with plans to transform the company into the first NFT record label in the Metaverse. Country music icon Dolly Parton has also recently released her first collection of NFTs dubbed the “Dollyverse,” which consists of tokenized artwork and music as part of her album promotion. Run, Rose, Run.

NFTs: A topic of debate during the 2022 Grammy Awards

Although notable, the intersection between music and NFTs took place during the 64th Annual Grammy Awards, which took place on April 3, 2022, at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The Grammys may very well be one of the most important events for the music industry in the United States, since a series of awards presented by the Recording Academy are given to recognize the most outstanding achievements within the music sector.

Given the rise of NFTs, non-fungible tokens were hot topics of discussion during the 2022 Grammy Awards. Trevor Noah, comedian and host of the 2022 Grammy Awards, joked midway through the event: “You know it’s been tough when your favorite artists spend from trying to sell you music to pictures of digital monkeys. The comment referred to the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT collection. But NFTs proved to be more than just a laugh at this year’s Grammys, as industry insiders expressed interest in use cases for non-fungible tokens.

For example, Tia Smith, Governor of the Grammys and Co-Chair of the Music Video Committee, DC Chapter and Owner/Executive Producer and Director of talentedSOL productions, told Cointelegraph that she is interested in learning more about NFTs and what they mean for the community. overall creative:

“NFTs seem like a very viable form of expression and commerce. There are many different industries embracing NFTs, and I’m very interested in creating content and forming partnerships to create artwork with NFTs as an extension of music, television, and entertainment.” cinema.”

Tia Smith (center) with Cointelegraph senior reporter Rachel Wolfson (left) at The 2022 Grammys. Source: Tia Smith

Smith added that his field of action is film and television production, noting that this particular industry has undergone several transitions over the years. “We’ve seen the beginning of film, video, digital, high definition, etc. But there are other ways that music and art aspects are thriving, so I’m very interested in the evolution of film and NFTs.” he pointed out.

Although the NFT sector is still an emerging concept for music industry insiders, Smith shared that he can understand how non-fungible tokens could soon be incorporated into major live events, such as the Grammy Awards, in the future. “We are living in the age of intellectual property and this is just another extension of it,” she said.

It’s also notable that some big-name musicians have decided to release NFT collections during this year’s Grammys. For example, American rapper and record producer Gerald Earl Gillum, also known by his stage name “G-Eazy,” told Cointelegraph that he was very excited and honored to release his first NFT collection at this year’s Grammys. Known as “The Geralds”, this collection was created by graphic designer Dzanar and launched on the NFT music platform built on Tezos’ OneOf NFT platform. G-Eazy explained that this installment features 10 unique 3D-NFT avatars that represent his diverse personality:

“Anyone who knows me would say that I’m an eclectic person with different interests and hobbies. So there are different avatars in this collection to represent that. For example, there’s the ‘G with a snowboard’, who loves the mountains, and there’s a G in a black leather jacket and slicked-back hair coming up on stage to perform.”

While “The Geralds” collection is certainly unique, it’s important to note that G-Eazy may be the first artist to present an NFT collection at the Grammys. G-Eazy explained that this was important to him given the pace of innovation today. “You have to pay attention to what’s going on, and this is where the world is right now,” he commented. G-Eazy added that he has always been a big believer in art not being limited to one medium, noting that his two parents are visual arts teachers “I grew up appreciating many different forms of art and I think all of this is compatible with various industries.”

In addition to the launch of G-Eazy’s NFT collection during the 2022 Grammys, Colin Fitzpatrick, CEO of Animal Concerts – a platform that helps artists break into the Web3 – told Cointelegraph that the Avila Brothers presented and unveiled their new hit song at the Resorts World hotel in Las Vegas for the first time. “The song features Billy Ray Cyrus and Snoop Dogg and it’s called ‘A Hardworking Man.’ Animal Concerts are the executive producers,” Fitzpatrick said. According to Fitzpatrick, the newly released NFT theme will be released soon.

NFTs hit the red carpet this year, but why?

While it is noteworthy that NFTs were a topic of discussion at The Grammys this year, it is important to note that the first use cases for NFTs came into development in 2017. As such, some may wonder why it took more than five years for non-fungible tokens to enter the spotlight.

Josh Katz, CEO of Yellow Heart—a music NFT and live event ticketing marketplace—told Cointelegraph that a year ago, no one in the music industry really knew what non-fungible tokens were. However, Katz believes this changed when US rock band Kings of Leon released one of the industry’s first NFT albums with Yellow Heart in March 2021. “After this album, everyone in the music industry music and entertainment started paying attention to NFTs. The most creative artists jumped in first, and then everyone else started sniffing around,” says Katz.

Nearly a year later, Katz believes the music industry is seeing widespread adoption of NFTs, given the potential of non-fungible tokens:

“For years, we’ve had multiple formats of music content, whether it’s CDs, tapes or streaming platforms. But now fans want to be part of an experience. They want access to benefits and utilities, so NFT platforms are now releasing NFT music that a certain number of fans will buy from innovative artists. This will soon become another source of income that a lot of people in the music industry are now realizing.”

To put this in perspective, Katz explained that traditionally, recording artists and musicians receive micropayments from streaming services like Spotify that then go to a third-party record label, publisher, and others. “All of these entities take a percentage of the payout and the rest goes back to the artist. We call this the 90/10 rule, where an artist takes home only 10% of their earnings and everyone else gets They keep the remaining 90%. However, with NFT albums, Katz noted that an artist can sell much less and keep 90% or more of their profits. Katz added:

“The 2022 Grammys represent a turning point where creativity is at its peak. NFTs are the future of the industry and the smartest artists at the Grammys know it.”

Crypto Companies Sponsor the 2022 Grammys to Keep Innovating

Given this, it is also notable to note that two cryptocurrency companies served as title sponsors during this year’s Grammys. Binance, the popular cryptocurrency exchange, and OneOf, a green NFT platform that works with musicians like G-Eazy, had a major presence at the 2022 Grammys. Lin Dai, CEO and co-founder of OneOf, told Cointelegraph that he was excited to see top tier companies in the blockchain space bringing cryptocurrencies and NFTs to The Grammys:

“The Recording Academy is the foremost institution for the music industry and we know that they are very selective in deciding which companies to align their brand with. We are excited that more and more cryptocurrency and blockchain companies are getting involved with the biggest marquee events in music, sports and lifestyle and we expect the trend to continue.”

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Binance logo exposed at The 2022 Grammys. Source: Rachel Wolfson

A Binance spokesperson further told Cointelegraph that Binance wanted brand visibility through its recent partnership with the Recording Academy. “We are exploring various avenues in which we can bring Web3 technology to the music community,” the spokesperson said. Although innovative from a marketing perspective, the Binance spokesperson added that in the future, Binance will educate Recording Academy members about cryptocurrency and how blockchain can help make their businesses more advanced and financially secure. .

In fact, this appears to be the case for both musicians and companies in the entertainment industry. For example, MGM Resorts International -the place where the 2022 Grammys were held- ad recently partnered with Yellow Heart to issue NFT tickets for their new production, “Timeless.” The show stars the Jabbawockeez dance group and will be NFT’s first ticketed performance in Las Vegas.

Andrew Machado, senior vice president of digital design and commercial adjacencies at MGM, told Cointelegraph that NFTs for ticket sales could bring value to customers. “They turn something as mundane as a concert ticket into a living digital object that can change with every situation, like the entrance to the venue for a show or after the show as a collectible.” Machado added that the creator now has a peer-to-peer relationship with the owner of the NFT, which means he can pass on new content to the owners. “For example, in the case of Jabbawockeez, NFT holders will receive food and beverage credit at MGM’s Level Up lounge,” he said.

As for issuing NFT tickets for a big event like the Grammys, Machado thinks it’s possible, but only time will tell. “MGM Resorts sits at the intersection of entertainment and gaming and we believe NFTs can play a role there, but time will tell on consumer adoption.”

Clarification: The information and/or opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views or editorial line of Cointelegraph. The information set forth herein should not be taken as financial advice or investment recommendation. All investment and commercial movement involve risks and it is the responsibility of each person to do their due research before making an investment decision.

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Grammys 2022: NFT, topic of debate between musicians and industry experts