Every day it seems like there is a new thing for artists to become a part of. Who would’ve predicted years ago that sites like MySpace and YouTube would change the music landscape? While one of those is more like a burial ground today, other sites have flourished in helping musical acts not only get their name out there, but help them manage their careers as well. Kickstarter was this crazy idea I never thought would work, and then I saw it actually thrive. Now enters a new platform for artists that is like Kickstarter, only more communal in a way; FeedbackLoop.
Founder of FeedbackLoop, Justin Chapman, was a musician himself who was fed up with the current state of the music business and decided to do something about it; an interesting concept not just for fans, but musicians as well. His new venture has only been going a few months, but he says everything is, “Great. Exciting, stressful, and awesome.”
FeedbackLoop not only helps artists fund projects, but connects fans to new music as well. Plus, they have this little time capsule idea that might just make me sign up because it’s new and I am a bit of a hoarder and love having trinkets around the house. They call it a “Record Label 2.0,” and you can find out more about what that means if you continue reading along.
Justin Chapman: Close…we provide the same kind of cash to artists that they would raise from a Kickstarter campaign (i.e. that they don’t have to pay back), but we provide the curatorial and support services of a traditional label.
Kendra: I thought of that because you fund artists, but there’s a bigger since of community. What exactly do artists come to FeedbackLoop for, funding for albums, merch, studio time?
Justin: We fund music projects, mainly songs that we release to our subscribers. Artists can use funding for whatever they need to get the project done.
Kendra: Is it just you running everything or do you have some helpers, because this seems like too much for one person to handle.
Justin: Yes. Absolutely could not do this on my own. Ryan Hall, Lucy Stone, and Will Lindsay (Drexel Students) help me with the day-to-day operations, and my girlfriend Jenny rocks the design and branding.
Kendra: My favorite thing has to be the time capsules. How time consuming are those to get together?
Justin: Not very! Once we have all the content they’re easy (and fun) to put together.
Kendra: Why make users request an invite to get a subscription, why can’t they just sign up?
Justin: To manage our growth. We are a very small team working on minimal resources, so we want to make sure we can handle everyone that joins. We don’t have a bunch of developers sitting around glued to their monitors; we’re all working on a bunch of things at once and need a buffer in case something goes wrong.
Kendra: What’s some advice that you got about starting a business that you’d like to pass along to anyone out there who might be looking to start their own venture?
Justin: Just go for it. You’re never going to be fully prepared, and there will never be a “right time”
Kendra: Lastly, we’ve come to the end and it’s time to make a mixtape. I’d like you to pick 5 songs that you’d put on a mixtape that would then be put in a time capsule to be opened 25 years from today, go!