” 8 years ago, Carlotta and I met at the hack weekend I hosted for a new song release, Tiny Human where we explored new possibilities in distribution and payment mechanisms in light of blockchain technology. One of the outcomes was Tiny Human becoming the first song ever to use a smart contract. Vitalik Buterin himself was at our launch as Ether as an app had only just launched on the Ethereum network and it was mainly developers and early adopters who bought the track at 1ETH (£1 at the time).
We sold 200 copies. For us, it was a massive achievement and gave me personally a lot of hope as I could see the potential and help be part of the change. That £200 a year later turned into £200k and funded the beginning of the Creative Passport’s journey. So impressed with Carlotta and really enjoying her company and energy I nabbed Carlotta to run the project. We needed to build an identity layer for music makers to ease the friction for music services to reach us directly, en masse, at both human and machine level. This was the missing piece no-body was developing. It was clear to me, that where there is organised data in the music industry is where there is money. We need to have this for ourselves if we are ever to be in a leading position, where we should be!
A much bigger and more impactful technological shift this last year has come to light with both new opportunities and concerns in AI and music, exemplifying now more than ever how much we need this layer.
Alongside my last tour in 2018, Carlotta held and led workshops in 40 cities with music services and musicians to design and build what we felt was missing. Carlotta then ran with developing this on a shoestring budget, leading a small but powerful team and 3 years ago, launched our Beta launched Creative Passport during lockdown. A tricky period, with lack of funding followed by a deeply frustrating acquisition that never materialised.
Powering through with such determination and amazing resilience, we’ve now come out stronger in our continued independence, with a new energy and focus.
The Creative Passport is now released and looking great in its redesign. Musicians can input all their data and together we can inspire and enable music services to develop with us at the core. Non-profit, free to sign up, true to our word. We pay for enough.
This launch marks the end of this birthing period and where Carlotta now leaves for other projects she wants to pursue. I feel so incredibly grateful to have worked alongside Carlotta on such an important and deeply personal project. I’ve been so inspired and in awe as she brought it to life over the years. She is a true force of nature. Such a hard and largely thankless role, to build a non-profit music start up, in an industry that largely doesn’t want to change the status quo with such little funding.
Ahead of its time but also just in time, now I can do the fun bit and begin the collaboration period to get the creative passport integrated into hundreds of services, as a log in, as a verifier as a time saving admin tool. The dream is, In a year from now, we will see the Creative Passport at the heart of a visible marketplace for music services. An abundance of opportunities for music makers and no excuses for missing or bad data anymore. “