Music Startup Q&A: Vampr. Tinder for music collaboration
Music Startup Q&A is a new series where Composium interviews companies about their upcoming projects, opportunities for students, and current trends in the music industry
Vampr is a social platform helping artists discover collaborations, create new music, and monetize their work — many call it a Tinder for musicians. Josh Simons, Vampr co-founder, answered our questions.
What current trends do you see in the music industry?
There are a few compounding things going on at once. Obviously COVID has eaten away at many independent artist's income with the halt of live music. Meanwhile, we've observed independent music making up an increasingly large percentage of all revenue generated from recorded music year on year.

In many ways, the timing of this couldn't be better. Competition in the music tech market has resulted in companies like us being able to offer things like music distribution and publishing representation for cheap to nothing, helping artists to generate income while stuck at home.

This competition will inevitably lead to mergers and acquisitions in the industry which should ultimately be a good thing for independent artists who will be left to focus more on creating and less on managing their business across multiple platforms.
What new projects are you planning to launch this year? What do music students need to do to be a part of them?
We just launched something called Happy Hour which we're hoping will drive exponentially more connections made on Vampr.

Essentially, we're giving folks on the platform unlimited swipes for a single hour a week, driving more people onto Vampr simultaneously. This brings more immediacy and value to the connections you are able to make. It's like speed dating at a songwriting camp, but on an app!

We also have some video creator tools coming soon which we think will be a game changer for young musicians, and we'll be focusing more on making Vampr a music news hub through our Feed. We're doing this in a bid to make the platform both more educational and a trusted source for your music industry news.

To get involved music students simply need to download the app from
Are you planning on hiring any music students or recent music major graduates? If yes, when and how many?
We can't comment on how many people we plan on hiring this year, but I'm pleased to report that several Vampr team members are music major graduates and that when we do hire this is an important attribute that we take into consideration.
What, in your opinion, is going to become the new niche for musicians in 2021?
I was listening in on a Clubhouse conversation last night between songwriters and producers and 'Jazz Trap' came up, which I thought was interesting! I think online marketplaces where you can sell your beats and services are becoming increasingly important for musicians across the spectrum.

We've been focusing a lot on horizontal networking recently, which is this idea that you should focus on broadening the number of people you collaborate with on a similar level to you. "A rising tide lifts all ships" as the saying goes, so establishing yourself within a solid network and community is going to be increasingly important as we head into 2021 and beyond.
Are you expanding your team? If yes, when?
We have just closed another funding round, with plans to bring on a few new key roles over the course of the year. It's all been made a little more uncertain by the pandemic. Watch this space!

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What skills do music students need to start working with music companies?
Resilience and perseverance — plus a great ear doesn't hurt! Hustle and talent. It really depends on the role. We have amazing developers who aren't necessarily students of music, and yet we also have great A&R people who couldn't write a line of code to save their life! It's really relative to the job description. But those character traits are important, generally speaking, irrespective of the role.
In what ways can music students collaborate with your team and company?
As the largest dedicated professional network for musicians in the world, by virtue of being on Vampr you are opening yourself up to opportunities you wouldn't have had before. We're also very active in speaking with our users and learning from them directly. We also go out of our way to help make introductions for users on the app who get in touch — we love helping the hustlers!
What are your predictions for 2021? How should we expect the music industry to look like?
A slow return to live music. It's going to be tough for a while as small and established artists battle it out for access to smaller venues before theatres and arenas come back into play. As such I think you'll see a continued reliance on online tools to facilitate creativity, build artist awareness and personal income for musicians.
Do you offer internships to music students?
We do! We're looking at increasing our number of A&R interns specifically, so if you love listening to music, hit us up at
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