With WholeWorldBand, music biz vet Kevin Godley's innovative new iPad and iPhone app, users anywhere in the world can record music and video in a virtual studio with a who's who of superstars.
The app just completed an initial round of financing worth €5 million ($6.8 million) led by IIU and Balderton Capital.
IlU chairman Dermot Desmond commented: "WholeWorldBand addresses a global market and will fundamentally change the way music is created, shared and monetized."
Founded by award-winning music video director and 10cc member Godley, WholeWorldBand is a new way for people around the world to make music together. "Think of it as your own multitrack version of YouTube, where you can record with anyone, anywhere," he says, with initial recording artists including the Rolling Stones' Ronnie Wood, The Police's Stewart Copeland, Eurythmics' Dave Stewart, David Gray and Passenger, among others.
The app is designed for everyone from accomplished professionals to complete beginners, who can work together to create songs and visuals using just the camera and microphone on their iOS device. They can then share their video mixes directly to YouTube, Facebook, Soundcloud, and Twitter.
A WholeWorldBand "Seed Session" is the starting point for each "Video Mix." Seed Sessions are music video recordings that anyone can sing or play along to and become a music video producer by creating a Video Mix with up to six simultaneous tracks. Alternatively, users can upload their own Seed Session and let others add to it. Anyone can contribute to WholeWorldBand, perform with music pros or friends, and share the results on social media outlets, whatever the level of their musical ability.
Balderton Capital's Barry Maloney, another initial investor, praises the app's potential as a new revenue model for artists. "WholeWorldBand is underpinned by a world class rights management system. We see enormous potential."
WholeWorldBand has pioneered a sophisticated digital rights management system that enables artists to earn revenue for their work, setting up all of the required performance royalty contracts when you create a Seed Session or contribute to one. If you create a Seed Session, you share in the revenue generated by those contributing to your track. Or if you contribute to an existing Seed Session and your work gets used, you get paid. With major artists already uploading Seed Sessions, this gives everyone a chance to potentially play on a major hit record.
"According to the IFPI Digital Music Report 2014, record labels are making more money from fan-based music videos than the companies are from their official releases," said WholeWorldBand CEO John Holland. "The current generation of video creation tools is complex and hard to use. Giving fans an easy-to-use app that allows them to create fun videos with their favorite artists effectively brings this ability into the mass market mainstream and encourages increased engagement. Several artists on WholeWorldBand want to release fan-generated versions of their music, so we are creating a win-win environment."
- This article originally appeared in THR.com.