CryptoDJs – the brand new NFT concept offering unique digital collectable cards of some of the world’s most respected electronic music artists – launched last February 9th, on the Polygon blockchain. Created by a small group of DJs, music lovers and experts from across the music industry, CryptoDJs offers new ways for fans to engage with their favourite artists, by opening up access to exclusive communities and content through collectable NFTs.
The platform launches with the ‘Genesis Drop’ sale of digital cards for eight internationally renowned techno artists – Pig&Dan, Christian Smith, Simina Grigoriu, Victor Ruiz, Gregor Tresher, Mark Reeve, Wehbba and Ken Ishii. Priced at $66 per card, there are a total of 30 unique NFT cards currently available for each artist (240 in total) with more cards to be added over the coming months. Fans can buy in USD using their credit card (without connecting a crypto wallet) or in cryptocurrency by connecting a MetaMask wallet.
We sat down with co-founder Dan Duncan (from Pig&Dan), ahead of today’s launch to find out more…
WWD: Hey Dan, thanks so much for taking the time to chat to us over here at When We Dip. How are things?
First off thanks for having us back, things are cool and rather different, but super exciting!
WWD: How has 2022 been for you so far?
It’s been an amazing start to 22 for us both. Starting new projects plus also celebrating 20 years of Pig&Dan have certainly started this year on the right note… I was stuck in bed for a month with Covid at the end of 2021, so it’s safe to say this year certainly feels like its going to be much more positive.
WWD: We’re super excited about the launch of your new CryptoDJs NFT platform. Can you explain to our readers what the concept is all about?
The concept behind CryptoDJs is all about creating an innovative way to build connections between artists and supporters through the use of NFT collectables. These NFTs are digital assets that are based around a collectable card that represent the DJ and features a number of attributes and colours that can add to their rarity. These CryptoDJs cards can then be sold or traded on a second-hand market where they could gain value. Collectors can also build certain sets / combinations that will allow access to unique enhanced experiences such as unreleased musical, backstage passes, meet and greets and access to exclusive events both online and in the real world.
WWD: You’re working with some of the biggest DJs in the techno world. Was it easy to get these guys on board?
Absolutely, I think because as a movement we all strive to find ways to connect with people who support what we do, this has opened up an amazing opportunity to give back to the true supporter and build a community around it. We were focussed on the fact that if someone purchases an NFT, it doesn’t end there, this is just the start of a long term journey that involves gamification. CryptoDJs artists will provide collectors with ways to breed and level up to gain access to assets that will never be accessible through any other avenue (watch this space).
WWD: Do you have any plans to add to the 8 artists that are currently involved in the project?
Totally yes and are already in talks with many more
WWD: Who else has been involved in putting this together?
Well, it’s a team of true music lovers, who are very much devoted to this for all the right reasons. For me, it was clear that I don’t get involved with people who don’t have their hearts in the right place and I’m incredibly honoured to be part of this family.
Marc Strigel – Ex COO of Soundcloud and mentor to many multinational startups that focussed on connecting people.
Ross Marshall – the motion graphics don who pushes the visual boundaries for some of the worlds greatest such as Coldplay, Duo lipa & Groove Armada.
Christian Lea – the marketing frontman who is responsible for creating leading concepts and campaigns for Soundcloud, Mercedes-Benz & Lego.
Gerry Haag – project innovator & start-up team leader for the birth of Amazon, Pelaton, Baboo and focused on enhancing the emergence of a desirable future for humanity.
WWD: We’ve seen a huge proliferation of electronic artists making a foray into the NFT space of late. Do you think it’s a concept that’s here to stay?
1000% — this is the only way that artists (not just music) can cut out the middle man, so to speak. This is artist-to-supporter in its purest form. For example on this project each artist can decide what they want to reward their supporter, the freedom is endless and I seriously believe that this is the future for the arts.
One thing that was lost when the online world became saturated was that feeling of exclusivity. That feeling when you bought a vinyl in Berlin and played it in New York and knew that there were only a few of these out there. Well, this is what it’s all about, it’s about offering special things to those who really want them. This isn’t perception or social media likes, this is deeper than that, its a direct opportunity to get your hands on something unique from the artist you support.
WWD: What got you interested in this space in the first place?
I’m a huge fan of innovation and art. I’ve been a collector and dealer of works by Banksy in particular for over 20 years and when stumbling across this world it was a realisation that this could be what we’ve been waiting for as a movement. I’ve been an artist and performer for more than 30 years and watched a real scene come and go in some ways. The connection between people was diluted through the perception of what we are meant to be and sound like.
Originally it was about going against the grain and pushing the envelope as a community. Well, finally we are back again pushing for something that is edgy and different and empowers the artist and collector alike. Win-win if you ask me.
WWD: Take me back to the first time you heard the words “non-fungible token.” What were you thinking?
“How the hell do I start to understand this??” I dug deep to get it but really it’s simple. You take a piece out of a chain (this time it’s a digital one – Blockchain) and assign it to an asset. Can be digital or real or even both but its authenticity can’t be replicated. The best Certificate of Authenticity you’re ever going to see in my eyes…
WWD: Besides CryptoDJs, how’s everything going with Pig&Dan? Do you have any releases or tours coming up that you’d like to share?
We have just finished off the ’20 years Pig&Dan’ set of releases will are set to be coming out soon on our own ELEVATE imprint, plus a new Downtempo album which is focused on Dub and trip-hop vibes scheduled for the sunshine months.
As far as touring goes, we all know it’s not what it used to be just yet, however, Pig is currently in Mexico touring around before he heads over to Brazil and Chile, and although my Australia tour just got postponed it looks like I’ve got some amazing events coming up in the Middle East.
WWD: What else do you have in store for the rest of 2022 that you can share?
After such a long time of being separated, this year is all about focussing on connection. Whether through music or by building CryptoDJs up with the next wave of artists. It’s all about remaining connected and searching for the best ways to make sure we stay that way 🙂
WWD: Any final words for our readers?
Bassline for president.
WWD: Thanks Dan!
CryptoDJs launched on February 9th. Find out more HERE.