Virtual concert startup Flymachine raises $21m with backing from Coran Capshaw, Bill Silva and Marty Diamond

US-based virtual concerts startup Flymachine, which claims to deliver “a first-of-its-kind immersive social experience”, has raised $21 million in new funding.

Angel investors joining the round include music-industry heavyweights like Red Light Management founder Coran Capshaw, manager and promoter Bill Silva,  Wasserman Music Managing Executive Marty Diamond and Wasserman’s Larry Webman.

Bay Area concert promoter Another Planet Entertainment, Ben Lovett of Mumford & Sons, WIRED magazine co-founding editor John Battelle, and LionTree Partners have also joined as investors.

The financing was led by Greycroft Partners and SignalFire, with additional participation from Primary Venture Partners, Contour Venture Partners, Red Sea Ventures, and Silicon Valley Bank.

Flymachine was established by co-founder and CEO Andrew Dreskin (co-founder of Ticketfly and TicketWeb) and Co-founder and Chief Experience Officer Rick Farman, of events company Superfly, who co-founded Bonnaroo and Outside Lands.

Joining Dreskin and Farman as Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer is Grammy-nominated Matthew Davis, who is also the founder of [namethemachine].

ATC Management, which represents a roster of over 500 artists, including Nick Cave, PJ Harvey, The Lumineers, Cuco, Santigold, and Johnny Marr is the platform’s fourth founding partner.

With this new investment, Flymachine, which launched publicly in Spring 2021, plans to grow its team, expand its network of venue partners, and develop new features for its digital events platform.

The startup says that it is also establishing a network of venues to deliver “hybrid IRL-virtual events” and has already signed exclusive agreements with Bowery Ballroom in New York City, Bimbo’s 365 Club in San Francisco, The Casbah in San Diego, The Crocodile in Seattle, Marathon Music Works in Nashville, Vogue Theatre in Vancouver, and Teragram Ballroom in Los Angeles, among numerous others.

Upcoming shows on Flymachine include Aaron Frazer, K.Flay, The Black Angels, and Lion Babe.

“At Flymachine, we’re creating something different: a digital venue of the future, an art medium, and a social meeting place. It offers a level of depth, agency and social interactivity that hadn’t before existed.”

Andrew Dreskin, Flymachine

Andrew Dreskin, CEO and Co-Founder of Flymachine, said:  “Virtual events have an opportunity to change the game for artists, promoters, and fans, but the technology that exists today is pretty underwhelming – videobox, paywall, and a bunch of scrolling nonsense; not exactly what one would call game-changing.

“At Flymachine, we’re creating something different: a digital venue of the future, an art medium, and a social meeting place. It offers a level of depth, agency and social interactivity that hadn’t before existed. It’s a pretty cool way to check out a show remotely.”

“We’ve already heard great feedback from artists and their teams about the potential to connect more with their fans and bring immersive, new experiences to concerts.”

Marty Diamond

Marty Diamond, Managing Executive at Wasserman Music, said: “Flymachine is live digital events on a completely different level. The social element is unparalleled, and the artist and fan engagement we’ve seen so far has been amazing.

“We’ve already heard great feedback from artists and their teams about the potential to connect more with their fans and bring immersive, new experiences to concerts.”

“In just a short amount of time, the team has built strategic partnerships with many of the most well-known venues in North America.”

Wayne Hu, SignalFire

Wayne Hu, Managing Director at SignalFire, added: “The Flymachine team’s deep track record of architecting many of the world’s best live entertainment experiences including Bonnaroo and Outside Lands, to name a few, aligns perfectly with the massive opportunity to unlock the future of social streaming for live events.

“In just a short amount of time, the team has built strategic partnerships with many of the most well-known venues in North America, developed the most innovative platform in the market, and created a next-generation experience for fans and artists. This was an investment we absolutely had to make.”

 Music Business Worldwide