Can You Be Heard Above The Noise?
After attending a live streaming I was spontaneously introduced to the founders of Chew, Ben Bowler and Wil Benton. Chew is a live streaming platform allowing DJ’s from all over the world to upload videos of their sets onto the website; this allows you to build a profile viewable to anyone anywhere. With over 20,000 upcoming, professional DJs and users in over 190 countries and over 10,000 hours’ worth of content Chew certainly demonstrates the power of the stream. Is it now the perfect tool to make yourself heard above the noise?
I spoke to Ben about how working in music had lead him to make Chew:
"The idea for Chew came out of my experience learning to DJ, building a radio show and working for a music company in East London over the last 6 years. I learned how important promotion can be as a DJ but how in the early stages the skill can be isolating and there's a big jump from the bedroom to the booth.”
He explains the power of streaming, “Its application in music is potentially massive. Other brands might live stream events from clubs but the real power sits with giving the tools directly to artists themselves.”
Chew is simplistic and because it is easy to use makes it an attractive option for DJ with varying ability. You register through the website, download the broadcaster app and you can then stream to anywhere in the world. They encourage a DIY approach to promoting yourself; you can build your own profile and following whilst communicating with other users. The website also provides advice on the best kind of equipment to use and how to maximize your set.
Anyone can use Chew, no DJs are hand picked. This can lead to the upload of some questionable content but Ben explains their choice for doing so:
“Anyone can sign up and stream their sets. That's the power of Chew. It's all about empowering creative people to be creative. Not forcing you to adapt to the image of the brand that's streaming. We've got DJ's streaming with their cats, to radio stations streaming their studio and everything in between.”
However the pair do pick the sites featured content.
“Out of this 24/7 live stream of content we really take time to choose is our featured content on the site and through our blogs. We like the most interesting uses of the technology and the best selection of music.”
With such a following and the sheer amount of users it seems only a matter of time before well-known DJ’s start taking advantage:
“One that jumps to mind lately is Lars Behrenroth. He's an established DJ from Germany. Since launching his show on Chew his shows have seen thousands of impressions every time he's live. He's really showing the power of a simple regular event and great music. This really shows that Chew's not only for those that are starting out but long time artists as well.”
With bigger names using Chew there is also plenty of room for up-and-coming DJ’s, I asked Ben if there is any we should keep an eye on:
“I'm really excited about our whole US community. From the start Chew has been a UK based company in terms of partnerships and marketing. But with no real input the US community have really taken on the mission of Chew to connect this generations of creatives in DJing and production.”
Ben has been touring the US to promote the site and even staying with some of the users. You can follow his progress HERE.
The brand has a lot of potential but isn’t a label:
“Chew isn't a label directly. As we build our network of DJs and producers over time we're really able to start seeing who from our community are beginning to rise above the rest. Over time these could prove really interesting to labels and we've spoken to a good few of them at every level.”
With competition from the likes of Soundcloud and Bandcamp what makes Chew stand out? Streaming is a competitive, ever changing business but the boys seek to break new ground.
“We fit right into the whole world of tools for DJs and producers. We're not looking to compete with the likes of Soundcloud and Bandcamp, a lot of our users use Chew to stream live and speak to their audience directly. As we get bigger I'd like us to be more of a part of these services and vice versa. For now though the core focus is making Chew the best place to get your content out there.”
Chew TV is created by DJ's for DJ's and aims to provide a platform to help push new music and aspiring artists. By utilising the power of streaming it creates a community of creatives with easy accessibility. However does ease of accessibility put us at risk of oversubscription? Does it make it potentially more difficult to be heard? Or does it mean that only the very best, standout artists are the ones whom will make the grade? Chew TV could be described as a double edged sword, hinderance or benefit, we are yet to see.
For Chew TV click HERE
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