👋 THE KNOWLEDGE: Get a weekly mix of the best news, analysis, and insider tips from across Music Ally's services. (Plus all the weird links and unusual music we find online each week.) It's FREE, fun*, and every Friday.

*actual levels of fun may vary

Posted inSandbox

Sandbox Issue 234: The New Era Of Music Videos

Lead: In the 1970s, “pop promos” (as they were called) were the preserve of the mega-star act, but after the launch of MTV in 1981 they became standard practice across the industry. The arrival of YouTube in 2005 may have blown apart MTV’s dominance but the format of music videos did not change much; it […]

To access this post, you must subscribe. If you are already a subscriber, log in here.

Posted inNews

SoundCloud: ‘Do not think of us [just] as a streaming service… we’re a form of social media’

How did Chance the Rapper, Lil Uzi Vert and other artists have such success building an audience on SoundCloud? Because they saw it as more than just a music-streaming service.

That’s according to SoundCloud’s director of label relations Julia Killer, who was talking at the FastForward conference in Amsterdam last week.

“Do not think of us as a streaming service. Yes, we’re a streaming service, but first and foremost we’re a form of social media,” she said.

“The more you engage, the more results you get. End of. It’s up to you to set yourself up for success on the platform.”

Chance the Rapper famously gave SoundCloud a shout-out when accepting a Grammy award in early 2017, and later came to the company’s defence on Twitter when it was under pressure over its financial situation.

Posted inNews

‘SoundCloud is here to stay’ says CEO… and Chance the Rapper

SoundCloud CEO Alexander Ljung has responded to reports of his company being on the verge of running out of money with a blog post claiming it is “here to stay”.

He also got backing from one of the most prominent artists using the platform: Chance the Rapper.

“There’s an insane amount of noise about SoundCloud in the world right now. And it’s just that, noise. The music you love on SoundCloud isn’t going away, the music you shared or uploaded isn’t going away, because SoundCloud is not going away,” wrote Ljung in a blog post addressed to listeners.

Posted inNews

Chance the Rapper claims Apple exclusivity payment of $500k

Chance the Rapper’s ‘Coloring Book’ was a big independent success story of 2016, albeit one backed by an exclusive deal with one of the biggest companies in the world: Apple.

On Friday, Chance responded to questions about whether that relationship compromised his independence, with a flurry of tweets.

“I never felt the need to correct folks on my relationship with @apple but now that more people have tried to discredit my independence, I wanna clear things up. @apple gave me half a mil and a commercial to post Coloring Book exclusively on applemusic for 2 weeks,” wrote Chance.

Posted inMarketing, Sandbox

Sandbox 173: The GIF that keeps on giving

Lead: GIFs might seem like a way of flooding the web with the most trivial of content, but they are a hugely important part of building fan communities around artists. While pop acts like Drake, Beyoncé, Little Mix and Lady Gaga are seeing their younger fans churn them out by the bucketload, older musicians like Paul […]

To access this post, you must subscribe. If you are already a subscriber, log in here.

Posted inMarketing, News

Chance the Rapper debuts new video ‘live’ on Facebook

Chance the Rapper debuted his new video last night, for ‘Same Drugs’ off 2016’s ‘Coloring Book’ album. He chose an interesting way to premiere the video to fans, broadcasting the (pre-recorded) video live on Facebook.

“Anybody use Facebook Live? I’m about to premier a new music video on here in 10 minutes ok? Ok,” he posted on Facebook, before doing exactly that.

Posted inAnalysis

Why Chance the Rapper doesn’t mean the death of labels (guest column)

This guest column comes from Bruno Guez, CEO and founder of Revelator:

In May of 2015, Chance the Rapper set the music industry on fire with a simple tweet that showed download numbers for the album Surf from The Social Experiment. In a single week, the full album had been downloaded 618,000 times with single track downloads crossing the 10 million mark.

Apparently, not to be outdone by himself, earlier last year, Chance pulled off the arguably more exceptional feat of becoming the first streaming-only album to chart on the Billboard 200 reaching as high as number eight overall.

Posted inCampaigns, Marketing

Campaigns: TAKE A CHANCE ON HE – Sandbox 158

With hipsterised adult colouring books proving a publishing phenomenon, the timing of Chance The Rapper’s new album (amazingly titled Coloring Book) is perfectly surfing the zeitgeist. But that is possibly the least interesting thing about it all.

His third album (or, as he prefers to term them, mixtape) arrived exclusively on Apple Music, making it onto a very limited list of streaming exclusives that didn’t fall on their faces (hello, Kanye; hi-ya, Rihanna).