Bored of the repetitive tracks on my iPod, I was searching for new Indian bands to listen to. That is when I came across an online music portal named MusicFellas.
Indie music has its niche following community. Most of the fans are loyal to their own Justin Bieibers and Metallicas and then there are people like us who look out for new bands and new sounds to listen to every time. With many Indian artists who do not have sufficient budgets to market their albums, social media and the internet become their best friends to channelize such talents. MusicFellas is one such venture which makes this possible. The website is co-founded by Gaurav, Mayank and Shubranshu and was launched by them in November 2012.
The UI is easy to go by with a simple navigation on the left. You can access the site right from your own Facebook account which makes the sign up process pretty much hassle free. The ‘Discover’ Section lets you explore the ‘Featured Artists’ around the site along with the songs which are trending overall. ‘Radio’ is one feature which I use a lot on the site which lets you play random songs based on your mood (Read Genre). You can share any specific song which you thought worth recommending on your Facebook/Twitter timeline to let your friends know and spread some band love. You can also write comments, like/dislike the track to give your feedback to the artist concerned.
MusicFellas gives you the option to buy individual songs after you have listened to it which is not a new concept but is one which is getting picked up wide across the Indian digital industry. These type of transactions work wonders for ‘One song wonder’ bands. I for one always hesitated to buy the whole album just because I heard a band’s song in some gig. The revenue model is a 70:30 based with 70% attributed to the Artists.
You can create your own playlists and add any song you are listening to. Although, I do feel there can be a ‘Private’ playlist which could be made available to make sure you have those kind of playlists which you would not like to share with your followers. The Followers/Following concept remains the same here as Twitter and you can also view playlist of the people you are following along with their liked songs. This can help you find people with same taste in bands and artists as yours and build a similar interest community around it.
You can view more about the artists in their bio description along with their offerings/albums. The description is pretty detailed and up to date. If you have become a die hard fan of anyone in the time being, you can shoot a review about that artist too and let others know. However, there could be a functionality added to share those written reviews on your Facebook Timeline to attract more attention and similar interest people back to the website.
The Featured Artists section gives you the most popular bands the portal has to offer. With a comprehensive list of names like Parikrama and Niladri Kumar, you got some great tunes of the artists to catch up on. However, I would like the site to expand their horizon and range of artists in the coming months.
The portal can surely explore the likelihood of being the marketing tool for musicians when it has its niche followers in India. They can think of expanding their reach by having widgets which can help bands place their songs anywhere and bought through on the web (Facebook App or their own website) via MusicFellas. With the world going mobile, we can expect an Android App for the portal to extend their reach to the mobile users and integrate their experience while being on the roads as well. The Internet provides musicians with an unprecedented amount of opportunity, control, and responsibility over the financial direction of their careers. The challenge for them is gaining those ‘friends’ across all the social networks and offline and convert them into fans and their consumers in the end. And with new artists popping up every day, I see that to be more demanding in the coming years.
Hopefully, MusicFellas can work as an end-to-end solution to these artists and help them gain their due for their hardwork and the awesome music the Indie industry produces. So if you are a band and don’t know where your next gig might be, you can try out these guys and if you are a music freak like me, you can try this too. And, you can connect with me on MusicFellas here (No Justin Bieber Fans please!)