Heard Well is one of the more intriguing new-generation record labels to emerge in the US in the past few years.
The operation turns to YouTube and social media communities to discover artists and drive their popularity.
Launched by Connor Franta, Andrew Graham and Wineberg (pictured) in 2015, Los Angeles-based Heard Well has created a network of social media influencers to curate playlists of their favorite new artists – with each playlist then released in digital and physical formats.
Last year, Heard Well inked a deal with Sony‘s distribution and services arm, Red, which has led to more than 15 compilation albums being released by the major which feature acts discovered by Heard Well.
Some of these released have reach the Top 10 on Billboard and iTunes charts, as well as generating millions of streams and sales.
Artists who have been supported on Heard Well compilations include Odesza, Gallant, Anderson .Paak, Daya, Duke Dumont and Betty Who.
Now, a new chapter: Heard Well has inked a publishing partnership with Sony/ATV, which will work with Heard Well’s influencers and curators with a view to signing emerging artists they have discovered.
In return, Heard Well will provide a platform for Sony/ATV’s new songwriting talent via the compilation albums released by the label.
Sony/ATV Co-President, U.S. Danny Strick said: “We’re excited to be working with Heard Well whose ground-breaking approach to music discovery in the world of social media is uncovering and promoting great new artists even before the usual research stage. With the launch of this A&R partnership we are looking forward to discovering some amazing new talent with them.”
Heard Well co-founder, Connor Franta – a YouTube sensation in his own right – said: “I am absolutely beside myself with how far Heard Well has come in just two years. From the compilations to the radio station to publishing, I’m thrilled to see what Heard Well will tackle next. For now, we’re diving deep into the search for our first artist project and can’t wait to shed that spotlight sooner than you think.”
“I am absolutely beside myself with how far Heard Well has come in just two years.”
Connor Franta, Heard Well
“This partnership is an exciting new weapon in our arsenal to add even more value to the emerging musicians we regularly partner with across our compilation releases,” said co-founder of Heard Well, Jeremy Wineberg.
“We have been working seamlessly with Sony’s The Orchard for the last year as a distributor so this was a natural progression as Heard Well continues to grow. We’re excited to continue our partnership within the Sony family and eager to combine our strengths to break new artists.”
“When we first introduced Heard Well to Sony/ATV last year, we knew right away we had something big,” said CAA executive Adam Friedman, who works closely with client Franta and Heard Well.
“Connor and Jeremy, in less than two years, have built Heard Well into a serious player, helping launch the careers of some major artists. The duo’s deep relationships with the world’s leading social and digital influencers, coupled with Sony/ATV’s expertise and roster of talent, immediately positions Heard Well Publishing as a market leader.”
Earlier this year, Heard Well partnered with TuneIn to create the first 24/7 radio station powered by influencers. It already receives over 100K UMV’s and is the fastest growing radio station on the TuneIn platform. Heard Well has also expanded into motion pictures, releasing two films, including this year’s, “I Love You Both”.
CAA served as a strategic advisor to Heard Well on the deal.Music Business Worldwide