Steve Aoki has been in the NFT space for a few years now, making him no stranger to NFTs. The unique assets transforming the industry is something he also wishes to see.
Aoki is also a huge fan of both Gala Games and their latest offshoot, Gala Music. It’s no surprise then, that he would be the one to give the opening talk at a private Gala Music event at the Forum in Inglewood, California, on the 10th of Feb. The event started off with one-on-one Q&A’s.
Sarah Buxton, the COO of Gala Games spoke about gaming and music, and the electronic artist BT took the time to talk up his Orbs NFTs that dropped on Monday. These stirred controversy in the NFT space over the weekend thanks to their starting price being quite high. They started off at 11.1 ETH each, which would amount up to $32,000. That price, though, will gradually see a decline until they’re all sold.
After the one-on-one chats came the live performances. H.E.R., Kings of Leon, 3lau, and Aoki himself took to the stage.
Aoki called himself a “futurist” in his opening Q&A. He talked about his belief regarding NFTs and how they’ll truly transform the industry, which at the moment anyway, offers artists quite a meager amount from royalties. He went on to state that his live DJ gigs are what make up for 95% of his income.
Invoking laughter from the crowd, Aoki stated that “If I didn’t have DJ-ing… I would have to get a job.”
Per Aoki’s view, under the economic model right now, royalties aren’t even something worth thinking about, though advances do help artists, somewhat.
“But if I was to really break down, OK, in the 10 years I’ve been making music… six albums, and you [combine] all those advances, what I did in one drop last year in NFTs, I made more money. And also, I was way more unhinged with music,” he said.
He remarked that part of the excitement stemming from NFTs right now is due to their reliance upon the communities that pop up and shower them with support. For him, that is a great thing as many musicians do indeed have large amounts of followers.
He was sure to use BTS as an example, though he didn’t make any mention of the Korean popstars facing blowback from fans after the announcement of their NFTs.
“As music NFTs become more of a part of how we integrate and support artists, the labels will have to do more than just add the song on a playlist,” Aoki stated.
Aoki is not just a creator but also a collector, owning a number of Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFTs, and having worked on a Solana Based NFT marketplace, too. Now, he’s preparing to launch the Aokiverse, which will serve as a membership club that’ll be based on NFTs which will “coexist with the real world.”
Web3 for Aoki, means ownership, including the owning of your own data. He stated that as technology improves as we head into the future, the times of Instagram and Facebook hoarding people’s data will indeed come to a close, transforming the internet into a place that can truly empower its users.
“There will be a new version where we’ll show what we own,” he said, continuing “and that will be a part of who we are.”