Backing Musicians that Actually Fit in Web3

This is just a general thought that I had for quite some time. As a music buff (of all sorts from classical to rap), I’m tired of seeing web3 companies get music personalities that really have no overlap with web3 whatsoever.

Let’s talk branding. I guess backing Snoop and Eminem had a net positive effect on the BAYC brand just because of the general overall reach of these two artists. But was that branding opportunity optimized, and more importantly, does it set the stage for a new paradigm for music in web3? Also the Timbaland thing that happened a few months back. Did BAYC and web3 as a whole get anything out of that other than a one time bull market pump?

Here’s what I saw. I saw BAYC guys with a whole lot of money who were thinking, “How can we put music into web3 in the biggest way possible?” On the other side of that, I saw pop artists who were looking for a bag come in and say “We’ll take any bag out there.” And the final piece: Somebody somewhere in the BAYC community had a connection with these artists and said, “Oh spanky! We can get with Snoop/Eminem/Timbaland and make a splash quickly!”

Cool, but not optimized. I don’t think these associations pushed web3 music forward in any substantial way. My alternative:

Web3 gets behind the giants of video game music production. Nobou Uematsu (Final Fantasy). Naoto Shibata (Dracula Battle Perfect Selection). Guys like that. They have a definitive name for themselves, but haven’t really hit the mainstream yet.

These guys

  1. have better music (because they’re actually musicians),
  2. they fit the narrative of web3 in that they’re nerdy, true blue video game guys,
  3. web3 would have a collective “oh spank!” moment that would cause a TRUE ORGANIC groundswell of support,
  4. we raise up the artists who can usher in a NEW paradigm of video game composition being respected as an art form and get them mainstream popular success, and
  5. this is a completely new lane for DAOs to take. Instead of backing western pop artists who sing about money and hedonism, we create a new, international lane for real musicians from all around the globe to flourish.

Just some thoughts, but thoughts I think need to be said.

Like, if ApecoinDAO backed Mr. Shibata to make the next Perfect Selection album, and actually gave him a budget to produce (or WE PRODUCED!) some AAA music videos for the singles, that… would… be… so… FIRE.


I like the way you think about these things. Recently, you had talked about some other ideas concerning gaming, and I agree w/ your general approach to these things. It would be really cool to support music artists in the space, beyond just large performers. What are some actionable steps we could take to look at doing this?


Why not draft a proposal for an ApeCoin Record Label with a solid, sustainable game plan, the resumes of the team to pull it off and the benefit to the DAO?



@ssp1111 Definitely thinking about it, because Cxmmunity houses a built in audience for new music because of our close relationship with 50+ unis. But… want to see first if there’s any consensus about the vision for video game music or a college based label. And I already have an AIP out. Not trying to flood.

@0xSword Thanks for the comment, and congrats on your proposal passing! Just thinking out loud right now — we first build the platform to capture IP from a LOT of musicians. Apecoin Soundcloud. Apecloud. Soundnana. :rofl: Anybody who posts their song gets $APE based on views and likes, in return for giving up X% of the copyright to that recording to the platform. That % gives the DAO the incentive to market successful and relevant posts for even more exposure and even back the artists who posted it directly.

Surprised Soundcloud hasn’t started a label like this yet. Be interesting to see why not.

But the basic tenet of my idea is please please PLEASE don’t spend DAO money trying to back one superstar… just like I suggested in gaming… the reason the whales probably aren’t going for past proposals is because they wanted to start competing with Ubisoft right off the bat with one game aimed directly at the mainstream… that’s suicide, and I wouldn’t vote for it either. Facebook didn’t start off competing with MySpace. Facebook started as a college-centered experience and grew to its current dominance because of that community.

In music and gaming, build a platform that allows for composability and captures IP, then let the community decide from there who’s hot, THEN back those entries. Maybe put out one marketed album every year or so from a known entity to set the tone (like a new Perfect Selection from Shibata PLZ PLZ PLZ) like OCRemix used to do back in the day. Even better — package the most popular artists on the platform with known artists on the annual official album.

Another possibility — just acquire OCRemix :sweat_smile:
Anybody have any experience with digital M&A?

Yeah, just thinking out loud right now. If there’s support and more community ideation, I’ll think about spending the time and resources to write a proposal. Definitely want to see where gaming goes, though. The two go hand in hand — gaming and music. So the ideas we come up with for gaming will definitely be relevant for music.


Another idea just thinking out loud…

We have to get around the fact that the DAO can’t take $APE back in as revenue. A back-of-the-napkin model for gaming and music that would increase Apecoin’s clout while potentially dodging this foxhole:

Whatever music site we set up gives artists $APE incentives for encouraging interaction, whatever that may be. However, instead of giving out $APE for likes or whatever, the artist’s reward is automatically placed as collateral in a lending platform, allowing them an overcollateralized stablecoin loan.

All the traditional rules of defi apply. An LTV that protects the DAO, if $APE crashes, all outstanding loans are liquidated, etc. This has a few advantages I see:

  1. Encourages artists to take out loans for productive activity like music videos, tours, etc., something that will help them pay back the loan. Because until they pay it back or produce something else of value, they don’t get any more money from the DAO.

  2. Encourages artists to merge web2 with Apecoin. The smart thing to do with an $APE loan is make marketing material on the big social media platforms, a la a music video for Youtube. Hopefully what that does is encourage artists to go into web2, make money there, and bring it back to pay back their web3 loans. Apecoin gets credit as a backer that’s backing relevant, cool stuff, the rep expands with each new piece of material.

  3. But the DAO never has to take in $APE. DAO makes money on stablecoin loan interest, which may bring up legal issues, I dunno. DAO can also forego this and simply allow for no interest loans so there is no profit motive, but model is still sustainable because we are hopefully incentivizing artists to pay back their loans. (Perhaps with time limits?) New value comes in from Youtube vids, Soundcloud payouts, other value building web2 outreach the artist performs.

  4. Artists that pay back loans or otherwise build rep get multipliers that allow them to more quickly amass collateral.

  5. Encourages community to get involved. Investors who believe in an artist can deposit $APE in their siloed pool and gain the interest rate from supporting that artist, or perhaps a percentage of the borrow APR goes to them.

As to the many holes in this 3000 foot level idea, we have the tech to stop gamesmanship on many levels. I’m encouraged by the Silo Finance tech that allows siloed lending pools. This keeps spammers from creating garbage content and botting likes to access an outsized portion of an aggregated lending pool.

As for scheming on the siloed pool itself, we stop that by creating an engagement system that resembles the Apecoin DAO voting system, with the same blockades for bots.

And what if artists don’t pay loans back and just run off with the money? Well, that’s not too smart. Because liquidations blacklist you, and gamesmanship will never yield enough rewards to make that truly profitable (that can be set by the token distribution rate for engagement). There are many technologies to keep blacklisted wallets from conducting Sybil attacks. I hate that the Tornado Cash blacklist tech becomes relevant here, but it does.

Bottom line, there are ways to keep people from gaming this system. But do people think it’s a good idea? Would love thoughts.


Hey Mantis, always love hearing your takes and engaging with the DAO, thank you!!. :clap: :slight_smile:

I wanted to comment on the lending APE aspect of your post and not so much on Web3 Musicians. Lending APE has been on my mind since the beginning of the DAO. I put together an early AIP (withdrew because market timing) that would direct APE from the treasury into a Babylon Finance garden (fund) which would collateralize APE and borrow and farm stables against it. When the stable farming strategy ends, it would market buy APE as the reserve asset in the fund, increasing everyone’s share/redemption price.

We went through the AIP process with Cartan and decided that after a year we would just send the earned APE back to one of the treasury wallet addresses as a means to refund the ecosystem fund for further grants, so this is always something to keep in mind. I’ve been following Silo all year since they announced and have been keeping a close eye on it.

One thing to keep in mind is the health of these lending protocols. Silo looks great because everything is isolated by nature, but we ran into problems with the lending protocol Babylon was using, Rari Capital. Long story short, they forked the Compound code which wasn’t designed for isolated lending and they were exploited for $80M. Tribe DAO voted to reimburse everyone (eventually) so everyone was made whole, but it’s still a major consideration for lending assets with low liquidity or easily manipulatable oracle prices.

Anyway, I just wanted to chime in to let you know that collateralizing APE and farming stablecoins for the treasury as a means to continue funding initiatives has been a long time focus of mine since the start of the DAO. There’s a lot happening right now with formalizing working groups, Board member elections, and other administrative tasks to ensure the DAO is set up for success before I want to dive into this deeper.

With the help of another professional Web3 researcher we put together a preliminary risk analysis report for APE that gives us a B, B+ score. We plan to share this report with AAVE, Compound & Euler during the governance process to allow those protocols to list APE, first in isolation mode, then eventually moving to collateral tier. This would allow the DAO to formalize a process for creating DAO native loans. Again, this would require a formal Treasury / RIsk Management working group to oversee these initiatives.

The point of all of this is so we aren’t market selling APE, but are still able to meaningfully fund public goods and DAO initiatives in perpetuity. Not to mention we would be bringing millions in TVL to these protocols, helping to grow DeFi and building healthy money markets for APE. There is also the potential for yield farming incentives depending on the protocol, chain, etc.

I would love to talk more with anyone interested in helping to make this a reality. :slight_smile: Please feel free to send me a message on Discourse and let’s set up a call! Calendly - 0x Amplify



Thanks for that! Good to see somebody’s on the same page in terms of building infrastructure. (This post will be all over the place, but screw it, this ain’t an AIP :joy:) Question:

One thing to keep in mind is the health of these lending protocols. Silo looks great because everything is isolated by nature, but we ran into problems with the lending protocol Babylon was using, Rari Capital. Long story short, they forked the Compound code which wasn’t designed for isolated lending and they were exploited for $80M . Tribe DAO voted to reimburse everyone (eventually) so everyone was made whole, but it’s still a major consideration for lending assets with low liquidity or easily manipulatable oracle prices.

Rari was a reentrancy hack, if I’m not mistaken, one that we now have a template to guard against. I’m assuming in siloed pools, the liquidity issue would still be important, but the oracle manipulation wouldn’t be as big of a deal with $APE. So yes, important issues, but we can play past them with fairly boilerplate solutions, right?

The risk analysis was a great move. What kept $APE from hitting top marks?

Some of the ideas in your proposal were very close to what I was thinking. On the platform I was beginning to envision, each artist would basically have its own Garden. I think AIP 31 might fare well now because we are much nearer the bottom than we were in April. Even with that lame SEC probe news, downside volatility isn’t so bad that it could wreck a strategy like this now as long as leverage was kept in check.

Another idea I was tossing around is that the collateral each artist has access to is based on an interpolation of Gitcoin’s quadratic funding mechanism, but the artist has to hold staked $APE to access it at all. That way they’ve got skin in the game. However, engagement, not dollars, is what triggers the quadratic funding formula to increase the artist’s $APE collateral.

I’m definitely interested in the initiative to put $APE in big money markets. Last question: What manpower are you missing to make that a reality?


Small add on:

When artists earn $AUDIO, there is no incentive to put back into the Audius system. If the Ape record label borrow/loan UI has an adjacent jobs board for videographers, makeup artists, editors, audio mastering, mix engineers, entertainment lawyers, etc. (anyone on this jobs board must be an Apecoin member or somehow curated), then all of a sudden the engagement2earn simple borrow/loan functionality starts to resemble a real record company, offering services a real record company would offer. $Ape circulates more, and hopefully a percentage of that $Ape goes back into the record company borrow/loan UI to back more artists.

For artists, this model also improves on the record company model because all costs for borrowing and hiring professional services are set up front. No record company overcharging and fake discounts like 10% distribution losses (a holdover from cassette tape days).



Correct, and Euler has very good risk policies to ensure illiquid altcoins don’t make it to Collateral tier which could saddle the protocol with bad debt if the oracles were to be manipulated.

There are a lot of metrics used to create the risk matrix including volume, # of addresses, token maturity, and volatility. APE volatility and number of holders are similar to SNX, which is also listed. The one thing keeping APE from being A tier is token maturity. APE hasn’t existed long enough to instill confidence, whereas SNX has been circulating since 2018.

Another thing to keep in mind is community sentiment. 1INCH was the last listing and had a risk score of B+ but it had a lot of support from the 1inch and AAVE communities.

You said it. Manpower. We need active contributors in the DAO. It’s not enough to hire a company like Gauntlet and start directing them to manage our treasury. We still need APE holders to oversee the activities and align our initiatives with our guiding values. We need those with a vested interest in the success of the DAO as a whole and not just another client to invoice.

It’s a long process with an end goal of having a sustainable income for the DAO through marketplace revenue and providing capital to money markets. It requires at a minimum 3-4 governance proposals across both AAVE and APE. It’s important that treasury policy is drafted and ratified thoughtfully and patiently because it impacts a huge amount of people.

It’s going to require a huge time commitment from members of the DAO, which I’m not sure is a priority right now. Treasury management is only one piece of the overall ecosystem and should probably be one of the last to come after we have proper governance policies and can further decentralization of decision making. :slight_smile:


The more I think of it, the more I’m convinced that providing $APE collateral to music artists in exchange for engagement to form a decentralized, defi-UI centric record company is the way to go. So do you think this could be done in conjunction with Silo Finance? @Tenzent

@Amplify I’d be down to help the cause. I have 2 years defi experience to add, but obvs this would be easier if there was a legit Treasury committee to offset the opportunity cost of getting this together. Definitely want to be a part of it, though. Please keep me informed of any efforts in this direction.

Also, is there a board besides BoredJobs that could function as a listing space for Apes with talents artists would need?


Will definitely keep you updated on any developments towards this. :slight_smile:

For ape job boards check out this post:

And this AIP which passed recently:



Was going over the old Apein pods. Some upgrades the Apecoin record label would definitely implement:

  1. 0 reliance on celebrity, this is a ground up label focused on creating a new lane, not rehashing old ones
  2. absolute, unrelenting dedication to consistency
  3. a.u.t.h.e.n.t.i.c.i.t.y.

Adding to this train of thought:

Apecoin could be a discovery platform that works arm in arm with biz dev apes to help musicians/devs secure OTHER funding. We put in the first small check, like the $MAGIC ecosystem, but we make use of connections in the larger ecosystem for risk management and more funding sources. This keeps the DAO from taking on all risk in speculative projects. Why should Apecoin be siloed in its investment strategies, especially when it comes to high risk stuff like games/music?

Also gives the DAO opportunity to increase the treasury without taking in $APE directly. It could take management fees in fiat for finding other funding sources for promising projects it incubates.


I like this Apecloud idea a lot, there is not many other crypto music streaming platforms, I can’t think of any big ones besides maybe audius. Ape has much bigger mind share than audius and a majority of all crypto projects, so something like this would be a place where there is a definite edge to be had. I vote ApeCloud btw, Soundnana too much like solana.

100% we are on board with this, we could seed a sufficient amount of borrow-side liquidity for such a thing to work should ApeDAO want to move in this direction. We’re also unique in the sense that we allow spTokens (Silo Protected Tokens), these tokens have the unique advantage of not being able to be borrowed by other users which would provides an extra layer of security AND consequentially people wouldn’t be able to use the APE liquidity to short.


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