SoundCloud Breaks Barriers in Music Industry, Brings New Genres, Talent
The music industry has flourished over the past few years with new independent artists emerging, promoting their unique spin on popular music genres and even changing up the game.
After Tyler The Creator and Odd Future broke out into the rap scene in the early 2010’s, they brought change to the hip-hop game , allowing more artists to surface with their creativity and freedom of artistic expression.
The new-found style that emphasizes a more laid back, shameless trend leaning towards skater punk meets emo posh, has grabbed the attention of millennials and generation x teens. It seems like the “emo” phase has slowly been making a comeback after being left behind by millennials back in the early 2000s.
Soundcloud has become a popular distribution platform for artists to share their new sounds and the vast numbers of recognition are making it easier for them to be discovered by the media and big label companies. Rap artists such as Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yatchy, and Lil Pump, whom most of us are familiar with from their popularity across mainstream media, all began their careers on Soundcloud.
2017 was a big year for hip-hop as new genres came about, known as mumble and emo rap. Artists like Lil Uzi, Lil peep, and Xxxtentation are the artists to search for when it comes to the more “romanticized depression” kind of vibe, a very relatable music style that hits our feels. Lil peep, who passed away last year in mid-November, was a favorite of the few emo-rap stars. His whimsical rock-inspired rap pushed the boundaries, being the grey on the rap game that has for years been black or white.
There are a lot of artists who were found on this German-based audio distributor, that you may not have been aware of and who you mostly know because of their rapid success. One of the fan favorites, Kehlani, a 22-year-old R&B singer from Oakland, California, was discovered from her track, “ANTISUMMERLUV” that was posted on Soundcloud with views that skyrocketed her career to the later release of 3 albums; Cloud 19, You Should Be Here, and SweetSexySavage.
After the release of You Should Be Here, she announced that she signed with Atlantic Records. Her booming success landed a major stardom debut feature on the “Suicide Squad” soundtrack with her song, “Gangsta”. Her song exempts sultry and a “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” vibe that best affiliates with the Joker and Harley Quinn and admittedly having you find yourself feeling like a “bad b****” driving on the freeway.
Independent artists are breaking barriers and flooding through the media with their talent and relatable demeanor. One artist in particular, who broke a record last year and was featured on one of Kehlani’s tracks,”The Way”, was Chance The Rapper. With 100 million plays of his 14 songs on his independent album, Coloring Book, he won a Grammy for Best Rap Album.
Chance tipped his hat to the streaming service in his acceptance speech: “And this is for every indie artist, everybody that’s been doing this mixtape stuff for a long ass time; shout out to every independent artist out there, shout out to soundcloud for holding me down.”
He also won Best New Artist and expressed the importance of being an indie artist. “I know that people think that independence means you do it by yourself, but independence means freedom.”
“Indie” has been given a whole new meaning with the association of social media. An underground rapper/singer from New York is serving realness and sass on her verified Instagram account. “Better than your rapper boyfriend”, Dounia, a 20 year old Moroccan pop star, and a close friend of Kehlani, who attended her listening party for her independent album, Intro To, is a star on the rise.
The Queens native has a very distinct style of her own; a cool, sensual, poetic hood vibe with a voice that sounds like butter. She’s just straight up dope, not conforming to social norms and Hollywood standards and sticking to the unconventional side. Simply put, being yourself is the new thing.
The internet has given any and everybody the opportunity to voice themselves and share their art with the masses. Soundcloud is the strongly prefered platform for anybody wanting to get that rise to fame. It’s becoming very common for musicians to go “viral” across the web because of the fan base they accumulate through the platform.
A simple repost and your song can stream worldwide, giving you the opportunity to go viral, make bank from views, and possibly sign a deal, making your dreams a reality. If you’re an artist trying to get your name out there, promote your music on social media with your “link in bio”.