Primer: Dublin MusicTech ROCKS!

Irish Music Tech

We’re pretty good at producing tech here in Ireland, if we say so ourselves.

And, all Jedwards aside, we also happen to be great at producing music (just kidding, Jedward, you know we love you!). In recent years, the crossover between these two fields has resulted in some of our most exciting and experimental startups, with Dublin’s ever-expanding MusicTech scene including (and embracing) international success stories and niche newcomers alike. We’ve rounded up some of these companies below – other noteworthies include Riffstation, Buzzoo and InMusik. Now plug in your headphones, crank the volume up to eleven and read on – Bono as tech investor was just the start of it…

Pitching themselves as ‘the largest legal catalogue of music on the web’, MUZU’s archive includes videos, concert footage, lyric videos, interviews and documentaries. Founded in Dublin in 2008, they have since expanded to offices in London, New York and Germany. They announced funding of $8 million from Oyster Technology Investments in 2008, and work with, the Guardian, the Telegraph, Mail Online and Rolling Stone, among others. @MUSUTV

BalconyTV live up to their name – a network for creating YouTube videos of well known and up-and-coming musicians playing impromptu gigs in unexpected places (it all kicked off with a series of videos made on the founders’ balcony on Dame Street). Founded in Dublin in 2006, the startup became Ireland’s first official YouTube partner, and now operates in twenty-two different cities around the world. Their archive currently numbers over 8000 videos with over 40 million views and they’ve raised $871.2k in funding from investors including Polaris Partners, Greycroft Partners, Lerer Hippeau Ventures and Startup Bootcamp. @balconytv

One of Irish tech’s biggest good news stories in recent years, Soundwave is a music discovery startup founded in 2012. Hailed as ‘the Instagram of music’, the NDRC alumni have built an app which incorporates sharing playlists with friends, smart recommendations and the ability to tap into tracks trending in real time. So far they’ve raised $2.9 million in four rounds, with backers including Mark Cuban and ACT Venture Capital. @soundwave

Whole World Band:
Founded by musician and music video director Kevin Godley in 2011, WholeWorldBand is a music collaboration platform which lets fans play alongside their favourite artists. The service lets you purchase a ‘seed track’ recording session with the artist, then layer your own recordings and film footage over it. In 2014, WholeWorldBand announced funding of €5 million from Balderton Capital and International Investment & Underwriting Limited. @wholeworldband

Founded in 2012, Gigstarter is a crowdfunding platform for performers, applying the Kickstarter model so that bands can sell punters conditional tickets which are only charged once the gig passes a threshold of minimum sales. At seed stage and backed by NDRC, they were one of the startups representing Ireland at this year’s SXSW Interactive. @Gigstarter

Two years in development at Isobar Dublin and launched in April of this year, acts as an ‘online billboard’ for events, films, theatre and music, gathering listings into one easily navigated interface. The site is currently being showcased in Irish branches of HMV, with touch-screen demos in-store.

Formerly known as 45sound, FanFootage draws on the wealth of footage shot by fans at concerts and other live events to compile videos, matching the clips up with professionally recorded live audio to create a more polished result. Currently in talks about their first seed funding round, they have already created videos at events in twenty-seven countries on four continents, and are also expanding into the world of sporting events. @FanFootage

BPM Junction:
An independent music crowdfunding community aimed at electronic music fans, BPM Junction allows DJs and musicians to sell their tracks independently, as well as promote their work to a community of fans. Founded by a team of music producers and DJs from Waterford, the startup won funding from Enterprise Ireland’s Competitive Start Fund and was selected for Google Launchpad 2015. @BPMJunction

Already profiled on Dublin Globe, Rotor is a new web app currently in beta stage, which allows the user to create a music video in minutes using your own track and video clips, blended with a selection of templates, graphics and stock footage. It’s an ideal option for emerging bands looking to find an audience on YouTube. They’re entering their first seed funding round. @RotorVideos

Also: Try the products out! Share your knowledge! And tell us about the Dublin music tech companies we haven’t mentioned and should be excited about. We’d love to hear from you.

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