SoundCloud CEO Kerry Trainor Discusses The Rise Of "SoundCloud Rap"
Yohance Kyles (@HUEYmixwitRILEY)
(AllHipHop News) If you take a look at the current SoundCloud music chart, you will see the leading artists on the site are all from the rap genre. Platinum-certified acts Migos, Lil Uzi Vert, Post Malone, XXXTentacion, and Kodak Black have songs in the Top 10, but the most popular tunes on the app are also from a yet another class of rhymers.
Rising performers like Lil Pump, SmokePurpp, Kodie Shane, Tay-K, Asian Doll, Trippie Redd, Tekashi 6ix9ine, and YBN Nahmir have even been labeled by some observers as "SoundCloud Rappers." In an interview with AllHipHop, the streaming service's new CEO, Kerry Trainor, was asked about that classification stamped on certain music creators posting to the platform.
"In terms of this group of artists, to me, they are about their immediacy and connection to their audience. The way that they access their audience through SoundCloud speaks to connecting with that fan base without anybody else in the way," said Trainor. "Our mission is to provide the tools, the platform, and the environment for creators to do their best work. Then we want to be out of their way. So for us, ['SoundCloud Rap'] encapsulates that."
He continued, "It’s a mission we believe very deeply about, and that’s what we’re in the world to do - empower artists and be that first place where they access their audience and that first place where listeners can find those creators doing incredible things."
Many music fans and artists were concerned about SoundCloud after reports suggested the company was in serious financial trouble. In August, The Raine Group merchant bank and Singapore-based Temasek reportedly invested nearly $170 million in order to secure the future of the business.
"We would love to reassure the public that SoundCloud is 100% here to stay. The deal that we did over the summer fully capitalizes the company so we could keep it independent and make sure we have the resources we need to build out this awesome platform for serving creators," Trainor explained to AllHipHop. "So that mission of empowering creators and being the first place that they come to build their careers and the first place the listeners discover them is absolutely here to stay. The company is in great shape from an investment perspective. That’s why I’m incredibly excited to be part of it, and I look forward to the next chapter."
According to the former Vimeo executive, artists can also expect a further roll-out of the SoundCloud Premier monetization program. Trainor added, "If they decide not to go the route of a major label deal or a publishing deal, they can work directly with us to get a share of the revenue associated with their music. So we support hundreds of artists today, and those artists receive millions of dollars in revenue sharing from SoundCloud. We’re excited to expand that in the future."