By Ashley Farnie
Staying home as a safety precaution due to the ongoing pandemic has led people to find other forms of entertainment that are accessible from home. In addition to using music streaming apps to discover new artists, social media apps have also served as an outlet for musicians to share their music and gain fans.
With a peak in boredom during quarantine, the video-sharing app TikTok, seemingly replacing Vine (R.I.P.), has become increasingly popular among the music community. When recording a video, you can either include your original audio or replace it with a sound provided by the app.
TikTok provides a library of sounds to choose from, maxing at one minute in length, and categorizes the genres and popularity to assist users in choosing a sound.
As trends and dance routines spread across the app reaching a variety of audiences, many sounds are repeated, including songs by undiscovered artists. The ability for trends to spread so quickly made it obvious that this app could help independent artists put their music out in the world with the help of viewers sharing and reusing their audio.
One of the first major instances of a song accruing attention on TikTok was that of mxmtoon’s “Prom Dress,” which spread across the app with a voiceover to add a comedic effect for TikTok users. Videos then surfaced of mxmtoon, also known as Maia, adding the voiceover effect to her song during a live performance, proving the influence this app has had on the musician’s career.
Mxmtoon’s music focuses on love and life, with inspirational, uplifting messages. Maia plays the guitar, piano and ukulele in her songs and often posts covers on her TikTok page. The wide audience that “Prom Dress” reached not only increased streams for the song across streaming platforms, but also encouraged listeners to indulge in mxmtoon’s entire discography.
TikTok has also served as a platform for artists to receive feedback on their music before officially releasing it on streaming services.
Artists including Maude Latour and ella jane have uploaded one-minute clips of their songs to TikTok prior to releasing them officially, allowing them to gain attention in hopes of attracting more fans. This tactic increases the number of listeners who will be eager to stream the song once it is released to streaming platforms.
As an active listener always looking for new music, TikTok has introduced me to a surplus of new tunes to get me through my quarantined summer.
I asked my friends to help me make a list of the artists TikTok has helped them discover. Here is a list of artists gaining followers from the app you should check out on your preferred streaming platform:
Abigail Barlow, Austin Havis, Avenue Beat, Bedroom, BENEE, Cavetown, Conan Gray, Crumb, Dayglow, ella jane, girl in red, Joji, Joy Again, Kid Sistr, Lizzy McAlpine, Lonely God, Loveclub, LoveLeo, Maude Latour, mxmtoon, SALES, Super Whatevr, Surfaces, Taylor Bickett, TEMPOREX, Thomas Headon, Zabawa
Featured image retrieved from TikTok.