Kingship, the virtual band based on the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT project, has named famous hitmakers Hit-Boy and James Fauntleroy as songwriters and co-executive producers.
The virtual band Kingship, which is based on the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT project, has just recruited a pair of “very real” big-time hitmakers—Hit-Boy and James Fauntleroy. The duo of music producers is known for creating hits for superstars like Bruno Mars, Jay-Z, and Beyoncé.
Celine Joshua’s 10:22PM record label under Universal Music Group (UMG) created Kingship in November last year. He based Kingship’s band members on BAYC and Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC) NFTs owned by Jimmy “j1mmy” McNelis, an NFT collector, investor, and businessman.
Kingship follows in the footsteps of the groundbreaking virtual band Gorillaz. However, as already mentioned, the former uses a handful of valuable NFTs as source material.
Kingship and its Music Producers
Universal Music Group announced Monday that Kingship tapped veteran producers Chauncey “Hit-Boy” Hollis and James Fauntleroy to produce “real” music for the Metaverse band. Hit-Boy and Fauntleroy will take the roles of co-executive producers and songwriters, working to create music that the virtual band will perform in videos and immersive online Metaverse spaces.
Hit-Boy is a famous producer of the hip-hop genre. He is also a three-time Grammy Award winner who has produced hit singles for Beyoncé, Rihanna, Kanye West, Ariana Grade, and Jay Z.
Meanwhile, Fauntleroy is best known as a four-time Grammy-winning songwriter for big-name artists like Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake, and Beyoncé. He has likewise produced music for other well-known musicians.
Hit-Boy and Fauntleroy have already lent their musical contributions to Kingship. In August, Kingship released a teaser video marking a promotion with M&M’s chocolate—limited edition M&M’s printed with images of Kingship band members—and in the teaser video, you’ll hear music from Hit-Boy and Fauntleroy.
Before the August collaboration with M&M’s, Kingship released its own NFT project. The virtual band launched 5,000 Ethereum key cards tied with special access to exclusive content and token-gated future experiences.
Part of the BAYC World
The BAYC is arguably the best-known NFT project in the Web3 space, and Kingship is a proud offshoot of said realm. As you probably already know, an NFT is a blockchain token representing ownership of a digital item. In the case of the Bored Apes, these are digital images/avatars/profile pictures considered collectible items that grant access to online communities, live events, and more.
Yuga Labs is the brains behind BAYC, MAYC, and the Metaverse game Otherside. Two other big-name NFT projects, CryptoPunks and Meebits, have since been acquired by Yuga Labs. The Bored Apes’ parent company raised $450 million near the start of this year, bringing the company’s valuation to $4 billion.
The Bored Apes is a favorite among well-known celebrities and athletes, which is why the collection has racked up billions of dollars worth of trading volume. One thing that attracts NFT enthusiasts to BAYC is that BAYC NFT holders have broad rights to use their NFTs for various purposes—creating and selling derivative products and artwork and as logos for alcohol labels, toys, apparel, and others.
In the case of Kingship, McNelis licensed his BAYC and MAYC NFTs to UMG and 10:22PM to create the virtual band.
Incidentally, UMG and 10:22PM are not the only music creators that have leveraged Bored Apes for musical purposes. Famous producer and proud BAYC NFT holder Timbaland has launched a Metaverse-based entertainment company, Ape-In Productions (AIP), in which he uses BAYC characters to perform music and sell products as NFTs. He also produced a music video starring BAYC #590, which he released during ApeFest 2022.
Meanwhile, rappers Eminem and Snoop Dogg recently released a collaborative single with a music video, “From the D 2 the LBC,” that starred the BAYC NFT images they owned. They also performed the song live in a “Metaverse setting” during the recent MTV Video Music Awards.
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