Bored Ape #9797, better known as “Jimbo,” has signed to Create Music Group for distribution and to Milo Stokes, who helped discover Trippie Redd and Tekashi 6ix9ine, for management. As a first order of business, Create will help release the NFT artist’s latest single and music video “Plastic,” out Friday (Oct. 28), which features the likeness of more than 25 Bored Apes throughout.
“Plastic” was produced by Dream Addix and written by Jimbo and Suigeneris, a trap and hip-hop artist who is a collaborator of Lil Skies. Suigeneris will collaborate on the creation of all forthcoming records with Jimbo, helping bring the Bored Ape to life. Its accompanying music video is directed by Themis “Reit” Chrysafidis, a young creative director and co-founder of 1UP Nova which partners with some of the most popular NFT and digital characters around the world.
When asked why he opted to choose Create as a partner for Jimbo, Stokes explained, “Create is known for being an innovative company in the music industry, and we thought it would be perfect to make a web3 initiative with Create to roll out Jimbo.”
Jimbo is one of many Bored Apes from the popular NFT collection, Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), to enter the music business. As Billboard reported last year, Timbaland launched his indie entertainment company, Ape-In Productions (AIP), which uses Bored Ape characters (like its first signee, TheZoo), to perform music. Additionally, UMG’s 10:22 PM label launched KINGSHIP, a virtual group of Bored Ape characters, around the same time.
In addition to the virtual artists that have been formed from this project, BAYC has another tie-in the music biz with Guy Oseary, best known for managing Madonna and U2, who represents the BAYC project.
A key feature of buying a Bored Ape is that the NFT offers monetization or commercial usage rights of the cartoon’s likeness to purchasers. This means it is within a Bored Ape owner’s rights to use an Ape’s likeness to sell music or merchandise as a virtual artist. Although Apes seem to be the most popular collection to develop into virtual artists, Grimes, for example, has also launched an “A.I. girl group” called NPC in recent years.
This trend is in keeping with older animated acts such as Alvin and the Chipmunks, The Archies, or The Gorillaz, as well as virtual idols like Miquela — a virtual singer and influencer with millions of followers. Her song “Hate Me” peaked at No. 47 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart in 2018.