30 years ago, to become a famous musician- it took more than just being talented. You could write the most intricate compositions, rap the illest bars, or sing like Whitney Houston- and It still wouldn’t be enough, because you still had no way to share your music on a massive scale.
You needed to be in the right place at the right time. Basically, you had to impress a talent scout enough to convince their record label to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars training you, producing your music, and marketing it.
Today, things are different. Digital platforms have allowed artists to leverage millions of fans around the world- at practically no cost.
All you have to do?
Create some freaking amazing music.
Here’s 5 nobodies from nowhere that did exactly that on SoundCloud and became famous practically overnight.
- Post Malone
To the untrained eye, the above figure may just look like a greasy white guy with grills, a terrible mustache and disgusting dreads.
Look closer, and you will see the supremely talented rapper Post Malone.
Post Malone rose to fame when he posted “White Iverson” on SoundCloud in February 2015. Within a month it blew up to over a million plays.
His other tunes, “Holy Field,” “That’s it,” and “Too Young” reached over 20 million plays, making Post Malone one of SoundCloud’s most successful artists of 2015.
Now with his latest #1 smash hit “Rockstar” Post has become one of the most highly sought after Hip Hop artists in the industry.
2. Don Monique
Like many legendary rappers, Don is from New York. However unlike those who came before her, she got her start on SoundCloud.
The song that started it all was Pilates.
But make no mistake, it was the consistent stream of new material she put out on her SoundCloud page that solidified her rise to fame.
When she was just a newbie, she started her SoundCloud career in early 2015. One year later, she had a million total plays.
Now that’s hustle.
Kehlani has one of the most melodic, flawless, and unique voices to hit R&B/ Pop. If you want to hear the song that rocketed her to stardom, then you should listen to “AntiSummerluv”. But don’t look on Spotify or Apple Music, because the only place you can find it is SoundCloud.
As of today it’s racked up almost 2 million plays.
Shortly after the release of Antisummerluv, she was discovered by Nick Cannon, who hooked her up with studio time.
Although- judging from the professional sound of Antisummerluv, Kehlani definitely tracked at a studio. Hint: just because you’re not famous doesn’t mean your tracks shouldn’t be on par with those who are. There’s no room for amateurs!
She proceeded to release “Cloud 19,”. Her tracks, “Down For You,” “Jealous,” and “You Should Be Here”, all of which got millions of streams.
Check out her Suicide Squad soundtrack featured song “Gangsta”. It’s fantastic.
4. Bryson Tiller
In 2014 Bryson blew up with the release of his debut single, “Don’t,” on his SoundCloud page. After seeing how well it did on SoundCloud, “Don’t” was commercially released as a single in 2015 and made it to the top 13 on the US Billboard Hot 100.
Bryson quickly became one of the most talked-about new artists in hip-hop and R&B. In 2015, he released his debut studio album, “TRAP SOUL,” which came out at number 11 on the US Billboard 200 and later earned the number eight spot.
Despite his newfound fame, Bryson hasn’t forgotten his SoundCloud roots. He’s continued to upload new songs for fans on his SoundCloud page and it’s paid off. He now sits at an impressive 50 million plays.
Kygo is a DJ, record producer, and songwriter from Norway, and as it turns out- the Norwegians aren’t just good at creating world class olympic athletes. They apparently pump out some bomb ass musicians too.
If you have not heard Kygo’s “I See Fire” remix, listen to it RIGHT NOW. The production will BLOW your mind. Seriously, invest in a good pair of headphones and blast that shit. It’s like Japanese hip hop meets electronica. It’s nuts.
Not surprisingly, his masterpiece racked up 50 million plays on SoundCloud.
Kygo used SoundCloud to release snippets and teasers of his debut album, “Cloud Nine,” in 2016. Not only that, but he also made history during the 2016 Rio Olympics as the first house music producer to perform at the Olympics Closing Ceremony.
Pretty impressive wouldn’t you say?