Thanks to Kid Cudi, fans have a new way to interact with their favorite artists. The rapper recently teamed up with screenwriter Ian Edelman and startup veteran Jonathan Gray to launch Encore, his interactive live performance app.
Encore, which has been deemed a “music-first creator platform,” will allow artists to “tell their story, release new music and host conversations and interactive experiences with their fans” straight from the comfort of their phones. It also makes attending virtual concerts more like the in-person experience. Before the show, for example, fans will be able to meet and interact with fellow supporters in the app’s online lobby. Amid the actual performance, they’ll be able to use clapping features that simultaneously pay artists for their live shows.
“My number one priority has always been inspiring others and providing them the space to tell their own stories in an authentic and meaningful way,” Cudi said of the new platform. “We created Encore as a space for artists to share their art, build community, while also being able to pay their rent.”
Cudi serves as the CCO to the interactive app, while Edelman and Gray are Encore’s president and CEO, respectively. In a recent statement, Gray explained his hope for Encore to turn the attention back to the artists.
“Music artists are the original creators and they have been forgotten by the creator economy and overrun by memes and algorithms on social media,” he said. “Our live AR technology empowers any artist to create personalized content and host experiences for their fans without a production budget or crew and make real cash with 100’s of engaged fans.”
So far, Encore has raised $9 million in funding led by Battery Ventures. 468 Capital, Parade Ventures, Nomad Ventures, Moving Capital, Kayak Ventures, and Gaingels have also made investments.
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