Marketing Kreayshawn: Audible Treats On the Rise of Gucci Gucci
Kreayshawn's rapid emergence and major label signing included the involvement of a whole team in her seemingly fairy tale rise. I spoke with Audible Treat team members who shared the process of helping Kreayshawn take Gucci Gucci to viral fame and a shot at major label success.
Gavin Rhodes, Michelle McDevitt and Dan Friedman of Audible Treats, based in Brooklyn, discussed their involvement with Kreayshawn which began via her Bay Area manager Stretch. He also brought in Eyes & Ears for graphic design and web development.
Audible Treats began working with Kreayshawn in March. She had mostly appeared behind-the-scenes in such roles as video director and her first public performance was at Audible Treats/Prefix Mag's SXSW Showcase. At SXSW she met a variety of "influential writers, bloggers, and other artists."
In April, Audible Treats began spreading the word to key influencers via the mp3 for "Gucci Gucci" and the video for "Bumpin Bumpin." They followed with Kreayshawn's first New York performance opening for Bay Area rappers Andre Nickatina and Roach Gigz.
On May 17th, The Fader debuted "Gucci Gucci" and the video received approximately 100k views in the first 24 hours with over a million in 8 days. Audible Treats received calls from A&R's all over the country. Several more influencer sites came on board early in the campaign including Complex and GQ.
From late May to early June, "video goes viral, receives almost 2 million views. Song is played on key radio stations in LA and SF…through her manager's connections. Major label bidding war begins."
On June 8th, Kreayshawn signs with Columbia Records.
Audible Treats continues to work with Kreayshawn as she builds to her debut album. Getting to this point took a small team with solid connections that worked to maximize the effects of Kreayshawn's talent and appeal while recognizing that timing and luck were with them.
Hypebot contributor Clyde Smith is a freelance writer and blogger. He is currently relaunching Flux Research to pursue his long-standing obsession with web business models. To suggest music services and related topics for review at Hypebot, please contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.
I am so confused how people like Kreayshawn. Sonically she really makes rap sound bad. I don’t mean to hate but she makes terrible music! It’s amazing how important it is to have a good two around you. Mad props to audible treats for doing a great job! If they can push music like hers they can push anything!
Oops I meant * team
These (NSFW) pictures of her helped as well:
I wonder if Audible Treats could do the same with a black rapper…
Yea…if the black rapper was marketable. There are over a million black rappers, not as interesting as a crazy white girl rapper who uses the N word, oops Im sorry has a friend that drops N Bombs like a Nazi! Its not about race its about interest level…thats why she is signed. She garnered interest from the public.
Yowch. Well….get that money, I guess.
Check out her NYC performance: http://www.youtube.com/kreayshawn#p/a/u/0/v59nBL8hLfc
One thing I didn’t emphasize in this post is that, when I talked to the folks at Audible Treats, they really wanted to make it clear that Kreayshawn wasn’t an industry product. That they were helping her build based on what she was and wanted to be and that helped lead to her signing rather than the opposite, which is usually what people complain about when they discuss major labels.
In thinking about the critics of Kreayshawn, I realized that the majority simply don’t like her and are offended that she could still have success despite their considerable insight as to why she is unacceptable based on their list of rapper requirements.
But, more important from my perspective, is that most of her critics sound like 50’s science fiction novels.
They’re the past talking about the future!
I agree, especially in the indie/broke community, we desperately want to believe that anyone who makes it was Chosen & Annointed by the existing big money. There is no point in explaining that the “big money” in music sprinted back to Wall Street many years ago because few people have the context for that.
What disturbs me about K., White Girl Mob, Odd Future, etc is not what it says about the industry — that part is downright encouraging. It’s what they say about our culture…our “future,” as you put it.
More concretely, though, what it says about our media. There’s a lot of successful indie acts selling more than these folks so on a demographic level, Brother Ali’s sales figures are a good antidote to Goblin despair. Takes all kinds, right?
It remains to be seen what K. uses this attention as a platform for — hopefully not more of the same. She’s smart enough to surprise us all.
It does remain to be seen what Kreayshawn will do. She’s a novice performer and is having to learn a lot in public that others refine over extended periods so that process alone will be interesting to watch.
Odd Future aside, a lot of the new acts I find interesting bring a great deal of life and fun energy to what has become an increasingly morose and superficial art form that is not going to be saved by obedience to cult-like rules of art making.
I guess what bugs me most is the desire to attack people who are basically doing what they want to do without hurting anybody. It’s not like Kreayshawn is using resources that would have otherwise gone to her critics!
“That girl gets around, she’s active, she’s in the scene, she’s always been there with a camera. She puts it down. I gotta giver her credit where credit is due in terms of being able to make your own name, put your own shit on the internet. She fuckin hustled, and she did most of that shit on her own, I know that.”
–Unity Lewis from http://www.rapreviews.com/interview/unitylewis2011.html
Thanks for that. Everybody in a position to know is saying the same thing.
Thats how i felt when i first heard her joint.. Im from the bronx, the foundation og hip hop n rap.. I just moved to the bay, where shes from, and thats the sound here.. Trippy techy swagg shit. Na meen, thats just how they do it here.
I’m stoked that Audible Treats was able to get her off the ground! If it wasn’t for them.. I would have never been introduced to Kreayshawn’s catchy songs and awesome style. I just watched her live promo footage from new york and i just wanna see her live!
I’m a fan. Great to see her get some recognition on the VMA’s. Been watching her live NYC performance of Gucci Gucci! http://www.youtube.com/kreayshawn#p/a/u/0/v59nBL8hLfc
I don’t like her musik.
What bothers me about people today is the sensitivity that goes around in the art communities nowadays. I’ve been listening to Hip Hop music since the 80’s, I’ve been involved in it since the 90’s and I’m still an active participant and I just flat out don’t like her shit, but If you express this or critique someones work nowadays, you get labeled as a HATER. Art is definitely open to peoples particular taste and or opinion of what they like. If you like trash, you like trash. That is fine with me, but also allow me to say that I don’t. The problem with Hip Hop music is that it is being controlled nowadays by a different entity. In the 80’s and 90’s you would get a good selection of everything played on mainstream radio, now you have to go search for the type of Hip Hop sound that you desire. Truth be told, there isn’t anything fresh and new about her dumb down, simplistic rap style or beats. There is nothing futuristic about any of this shit nowadays. I can go back 15 years or more and find raps records that sound just like what Kreayshawn is doing now. The only difference is that people today are a little more accepting to that sound. In the 80’s there were tons of corny Hip Hop records, and in the 90’s there was a handful of corn ball shit as well, The only difference is, that her shit would not be acceptable during the 90’s era. Although artist like MC hammer and Vanilla Ice were huge mega stars during their era, the Hip Hop community ridiculed their success, and made them out to be a joke. Today it’s a little more acceptable to not have the most complex beats or the most complex lyrics, but STOP, telling me that I can’t hate on her shit. I’ve heard some of the best Hip Hop records ever made during my years of being a fan and her shit is horrible. point blank, but to each is own.
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