John Legend is launching an NFT platform for musicians and celebrities navigating the digital collectibles frenzy

As part of the new venture, the 12-time Grammy Award winner will collaborate with Chris Lin, founder of Taipei-based digital music service KKBOX, Twitch cofounder Kevin Lin, and Matt Cheng of early-stage venture firm Cherubic Ventures.

The platform, OurSong, enables artists to monetize their work by issuing nonfungible tokens, which are digital certificates of authenticity that can be purchased or sold. Legend will serve as chief impact officer in order to attract new artists and their fans.

“It can be really intimidating for an emerging creative who wants to share their art, their work, their creativity with the world, but they feel like they can’t possibly do something worth that much money,” Legend said in an interview. “Some of them are working their way up to the point where they can make a living off of their art as students.”

According to Chris Lin, the new company’s CEO, the service will be simple to use and will not require a cryptocurrency wallet. Users can attach privileges to digital cards, such as access to unreleased music or private chatrooms. The platform also offers gifting options in which no money is exchanged.

Rather than building their own platforms, most celebrities have chosen to create and sell their own NFTs. After co-founding Autograph, an NFT platform that specializes in sports collectibles such as virtual Wayne Gretzky statues and Tony Hawk skateboard tricks, retired NFL quarterback Tom Brady has become one of the most prominent celebrities in this space. In January, Autograph raised $170 million in a round led by Silicon Valley investors Andreessen Horowitz and Kleiner Perkins.

Legend and his co-founders declined to provide financial information about their new venture. Previously, the musician invested in a variety of businesses, including the interactive streaming platform Adventr, vegan leather manufacturer MycoWorks, organic grocer Thrive Market, Rocean water pods, and Walker & Co. beauty products.

“I’ve always been so focused on music, and I still think of music as my first love, my first job, and the thing I spent the majority of my mental energy thinking about,” Legend said. “When I think about what I want to do, I try to get involved in projects that I believe will help to connect the world.”

 

Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.

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