Björk is encouraging her fans to purchase her forthcoming album with cryptocurrencies, giving them the chance to earn rewards too.
The Icelandic avant-garde icon’s ninth album, Utopia, is expected to be released on the 24 November. Teaming up with London-based Blockpool, a B2B blockchain framework, Björk has allowed for four different digital currencies to be used to buy her album, reports The Times. These include bitcoin, litecoin, dashcoin, and audiocoin.
Those who pre-order her album through her website or Björk’s record label One Little Indian will receive 100 AudioCoins. These can then be converted to other cryptocurrencies. At the time of writing, that amounts to just over $0.25. The reward will be deposited into an e-wallet created for them by Blockpool. It may also be possible for fans to be rewarded with more audiocoins by sharing links to Björk’s music and merchandise on social media.
According to Blockpool, current streaming services are failing to provide artists with fair incomes, stating that ‘decentralised music currency rewards fans and artists at the same time.’
With the use of the blockchain artists will receive payment from fans at the same time as fans receive the music on their computers. By cutting out the middleman, artists don’t need to worry about seeing a cut from the album sales.
This move by Björk marks a significant step by a major artist to back the use of digital currencies in the last few years. In October 2015, Imogen Heap, Grammy Award-winning U.K. singer, songwriter, and producer, released her song Tiny Human on a smart contract. Blockchain startup Ujo Music worked with Heap on the project. Fans of Heap were able to pay for her single with ether.
Last October, while speaking at the Oslo Innovation Week, Heap explained that it was time that the industry reinvented the way in which people discover new content and how creators get paid. In her opinion the blockchain presents the solution to many of the issues surrounding the music industry.
According to Kevin Bacon, Blockpool CEO, while people have done things involving cryptocurrencies and artists before, this is the first time it has been achieved on this scale by a major performer.
Music Ally reports Bacon as saying:
While it will be interesting to see how the crypto community responds to this, Utopia is also a gateway for people to go into crypto for the first time. Björk is the best artist in the world we could imagine doing this.
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