How Music NFTs Spark New Creativity for Annika Rose

Arjan Writes
7 min readMar 1


“There’s no reason why creatives shouldn’t be capitalizing on every single tool available to help extend their art and find success.”

(Annika Rose publicity photo)

Annika Rose is no stranger to the wild twists and turns of the music business. The rapidly-rising pop singer was only 13 years old when she was signed to Simon Cowell’s Syco label to be the lead in a girl group the famed pop impresario was putting together. Things didn’t work out exactly as planned and Rose embarked on a solo career working with some of the biggest hit writers in the world.

Things continued to look up when Tap Management signed Rose alongside fellow clients Dua Lipa, Ellie Goulding, and Lana Del Rey. The singer had early success with tracks like “In The End” and “I’m Better” which received lots of playlist love from Apple Music. But despite Rose’s burgeoning professional success, her personal life turned upside down when her parents divorced with lots of complications and an unexpected illness. If all that wasn’t enough, a global pandemic brought all forward momentum to a screeching halt. (Rose provides more details in a candid TikTok video.)

Rose is not a quitter and regained her footing by focusing on the one thing she loves most: making great music. It should come as no surprise that Web3 and Music NFTs are an exciting new format for the singer to further her career. In recent months, the singer has immersed herself in the NFT community by taking part in numerous Twitter Spaces, speaking at a Water & Music panel in Los Angeles, and performing during NFT NYC in June.

This week, on Friday, October 7, Rose is teaming up with to mint her fantastic new single, “Bruises.” It marks the start of a new era of artistry and exploration for the singer. With the NVAK Collective team firmly by her side, Annika is looking forward to this new chapter in her career that focuses on doing music entirely on her own terms.

Inspired by a friend’s mental health struggle, “Bruises” gently masks its serious undertones with a message and sound that is both uplifting and deeply comforting. There is no need to tackle these issues alone. Rose acknowledges the hardship her friend is facing. “You’re blowing smoke up in the air, like you’re on fire,” she sings.

Here’s what I think: “Bruises” is one of the most chart-ready, pop-loving Music NFTs I’ve heard to date. The song’s glowing ’80s feel and swaying chorus are absolutely gorgeous. “Bruises” is a Web3 hit about to happen. Frankly speaking, artists like Annika Rose are crucial in taking Music NFTs to a new level of pop and mainstream acceptance.

I chatted with Annika Rose via email and text to learn more about “Bruises” and her experience with Music NFTs so far.

Congratulations with your first Music NFT drop this week! What compelled you to step into the world of Web3 and explore this new music format?

“Thank you so much! The anticipation has been real. There are a few reasons I was initially compelled to join space, and they seem to keep on growing the more I learn and participate. Of course, when you hear the word NFT having only ever been fed the narrative around NFTs that the mass general public seemingly has adopted, you’re skeptical. However, I was lucky enough to be gently guided by someone I trust, who allowed me the time and space to fall in love with it in my own time. [Music NFTs] help to create deeper personalized relationships and connections to early supporters; they foster community-based collaboration, traceable actions, exchanges, and compensation; Music NFTs can be long-form art where I’m able to tell a story not just through a song, but through an entire experience. NFTs also include a diverse crowd through that experience — gamers, tech people, collectors, and rabid music fans. [Music NFTs also redefine] ownership; the fact that I can build a meaningful audience that doesn’t have to stay exclusive to a single entity. I can take my audience with me wherever I go, with fairer and immediate compensation for my art and collaborators.

As if just a couple of those reasons weren’t enough, there was no doubt in my mind that this was something I should explore and utilize immediately.”

Tell us about the song you’re minting. Why did you pick this song in particular to be your first Music NFT?

“The song is called “Bruises.” I wrote it with my dear friend and collaborator Paul Phamous. It’s cycled through many lives on the production side, but the final sonic palette was finished off by Bailey Lindley, Alex Salibian, and Ethan Schneiderman — that’s my little crew. I had been watching a very close friend of mine suffer from some pretty debilitating mental obstacles and self-sabotage and I was terrified to my core that I couldn’t help her any more than I had already tried. I came into the studio in October last year and it was so prevalent in my thoughts, there was no other song I could’ve written that day. It was my way of trying to connect with her in the only way I could at that point. The song wrote itself.

It seemed to me like the perfect song to kick off my journey into Web3 because although lyrically the story is dark, there’s a lightness to the music around it and I want people to dance and cry. I want them to do all of it, which is pretty characteristic of me. So, I ran with it.”

“[With Music NFTs] I can take my audience with me wherever I go, with fairer and immediate compensation for my art and collaborators.”

How has the response been from fans? Have you noticed curiosity? For some of them, it may be the first time getting a crypto wallet and purchasing an NFT.

“Honestly, it’s the first time for most of them! It’s been a huge learning curve for me. I know the approach has to be gentle. I don’t want people to be forced into something. I want it to be their idea. It’s a slow burn. I’m very careful with how I phrase things, and if a new word or concept, or activity causes someone to tilt their head and dig a little deeper, that’s my hope. I do see it happening. I’ve been just casually onboarding people into my Discord and watching every day how they start to ask more questions and my community comes together to help answer those questions and get new friends set up for success in creating a wallet and participating in what I’m doing. It’s incredible to watch. and of course, I answer any and all questions thrown my way too. Curiosity is the key, followed up with supportive guidance.”

What’s your take on Music NFTs from an artistic point of view? Does it spark new creativity?

“10000%! It’s quick, which is not how I’m used to working. I’m a very meticulous person in all pursuits — the perfectionist type. It makes me less protective in a sense, more open. not decreasing the quality of what I create, but more so pushing me out of my comfort zone and self-critical headspace. There’s less time to question every single piece of the puzzle, which is really good for my creativity. Collaborations in Web3 feel almost spontaneous. and they’re outside the bounds of what collaboration looks like in Web2. It’s a challenge, mentally and creatively, but it’s unlocking new portals.”

Who are people in the NFT space you look up to?

“Oh, man! There are so many! Off the top of my head, I’m obsessed with the Hume Collective! I love what they’re doing for the future of music through Angelbaby, metaverse stars, and how they’re restructuring what “success” could look like. The fan-to-artist relationship and partnership is an inspiring model for me to look at for what I’m doing. I also love Jagwar Twin and how he’s marrying both Web2 and Web3 in an insanely innovative way. His whole project feels like a secret game. I’m dying to learn how to play.

Outside of the Web3 music world, I’m a huge fan of social change communities like DoinGud, and myBFF amongst a handful of others. Those communities are incredibly important.”

What is the biggest misconception from artists about Music NFTs? What may be holding them back?

“A lot of music artists simply just do not know a space like this even exists, and I think the ones that do are scared. It makes sense to me. I’m still scared sometimes. New things are scary. As I mentioned earlier, there are so many widely adopted misconceptions about NFTs, so the prospect of publicly putting yourself out there and talking about it is frightening. The internet can be a really dark place and people are quick to make assumptions about your intentions. I think it takes a huge amount of courage to take the leap and have an underlying belief that you’re doing things for the right reasons. I don’t think artists/fans have fully realized how much incentive lies in Web3 for both parties. It’s a very layered new world, still being built upon, waiting to be utilized in meaningful ways.

I also think there’s a misconception floating around that if you immerse yourself in the Web3 world, you’ll immediately be classified as a “Web3 artist.” which is bullshit. Not everything needs to have a title. If you’re an artist, you’re an artist. Period. There’s no reason why creatives shouldn’t be capitalizing on every single tool available to help extend their art and explore every path to find success, in whatever way they choose to define it. “



Arjan Writes

Recommended from Medium


See more recommendations