SoundCloud’s Near-Death Experience

Not necessarily coming as a shock to many people hip on music business news, a story by The Fader earlier this week revealed that the popular music streaming service SoundCloud was marked for death. The TechCrunch report cited stated that reporters were told by SoundCloud founders Alex Ljung and Eric Wahlforss that the company only had enough funding to get it through 50 more days under independent ownership.

The discussion had been opened shortly after SoundCloud had laid off over 170 employees in a last chance effort to make some sort of a profit and extend its eminent expiration. Following the report just a day after, however, The Fader reported what seemed like a miracle from Rap’s Friendly Neighborhood Chance. Chance the Rapper, known for his philanthropy toward many causes, including massive donations to the Chicago public school system, tweeted that same morning “Just had a very fruitful call with Alex Ljung. @SoundCloud is here to stay.”

The importance of SoundCloud is obvious to anybody who’s ever made music looking for a platform other than handing out CDs in front of a 7/11. For Florida rappers currently blowing up and those who already have, such as Ski Mask, XXXTENTACION, Denzel Curry, and Kodak Black, SoundCloud has been a godsend. SoundCloud is very often the Knight in Shining Armor who comes to rescue underground artists from their anonymity and brings them above ground where their skill is almost immediately acknowledged. Kodak Black, a Broward success story, started out on SoundCloud and is now signed to Atlantic Records, the same label that released Led Zeppelin IV which was certified 23-times Platinum, one of the highest certified albums of all time.

If you could not see the importance of SoundCloud to the culture on a large scale, looking at just the artists who’ve come out of Florida in the past 5 years would reveal the leaps and bounds SoundCloud has helped make in the musical world.

Chance the Rapper’s tweet of reassurance is generally trusted, as he’s seen as the “good guy” activist in the rap game right now. No sources have revealed the “fruits” of the conversation between Chance and co-founder Alex Ljung, so it’s unknown if laying off almost half of SoundCloud’s workforce really did save SoundCloud in the long run or if Chance the Rapper swooped in and saved it, but we’re ecstatic either way. Freedom of expression and one of the greatest platforms to showcase it on has been saved, so don’t stop now, keep uploading and blowing up while you still can, use the all tools you’ve got. Don’t forget to submit to MIEUX for your music, art, fashion, photography, and events. (We love SoundCloud).

Justin Smith
Justin Smith

Location: Orlando | Writer for Mieux Magazine

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