Spotify, Soundcloud, Beats, Tidal, Youtube….no doubt that music tech is transforming the music industry. Streaming technologies are on the rise replacing CD sales and downloads. What is next? (only 10 years old).

The controversy is the impression that music tech is cannibalizing the revenues for artists but at the same time is saving the music industry by compensating losses in physical sales. (see attached graph, source ASCAP).




Next generation music tech?
Many eyes point towards a New York startup called WR1 (we are one).

WR1 is introducing a new and interesting solution to solve the problems in the music industry. Instead of building technology over old assets such as streaming, WR1 is inventing a new asset for artists; the WR1 fan experience.

“Fans want to be close to their artists and ultimately meet in person. We looked at ways to optimize the fan connection through technology and invented the ultimate tool that we believe will have huge impact in the future”, says WR1’s CEO, Geo Labelle.

Over the last decade fan clubs disappeared into social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Neither of these channels provided optimized experiences for fans, nor did they gain any assets for the artists. The exclusivity and excitement of being a fan got lost in a commercialized, time consuming, one-way platform built to make Wall Street investors happy.

WR1’s mission is to invent a new and optimized fan experience that brings artist and fans closer than ever before. The patented WR1 technology is currently being developed and project to launch in June 2015.

By empowering an exclusive, personal and premium connection between fans and artists, WR1 believes that fans will subscribe to an artist at a low monthly fee. The financial impact is considerable. Only one fan subscribed at $2.99 per months equals revenues of 100 albums sold on iTunes or more than 50 000 plays on Spotify for an artist over a year.

“We believe that WR1 will become the primary income source for artists in the future – a steady and reliable monthly income. A new artist getting only 5 WR1 supporters, has basically sold their first 500 albums. It’s a start of a carrier”, says Geo.

“WR1’s vision is to create a technology that brings awesomeness to fans but also gives financial power back to artists so that they can support themselves and not being forced to give up their dreams.”

The WR1 technology works as the mothership between artists, fans and external social platforms. Artists can choose the access level for any content and automatically boost it through their social media. When fans are linked back to WR1, they can choose to follow artists for free. However, the deep, exclusive and personal artist connection is restricted for the subscribed fans.

Connecting with 3000 fans will generate more than $100 000 in annual income for an artist ($2.99 per months) and 500 000 fans equals $17 million annually. With such significant numbers, WR1 has the potential of making a real difference, relieving artists from the slave-like terms of the traditional music industry.

Instead of counting plays on YouTube or followers on Instagram, the focus will shift to how many real fans artists have connected on their WR1 channel. Creating amazing, personal fan experiences will be in focus when artists realize the importance of every single fan.

One thing is sure, as long as the interests for artists are strong, music tech will continue changing the music industry.



WR1 Inc. is a tech company located in Soho, New York, developing the next generation tech platform for entertainers.

WR1s vision is to create the ultimate fan experience, providing a primary income source for artists, and thereby contribute to a vibrant future for entertainment.


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