‘Us the Duo’ Goes Viral On Vine, Calls Record Deal An Accident
Michael and Carissa Alvarado of the group Us the Duo, otherwise known as Vine's first viral music sensation, first graced the internet with a #6SecondCover of John Legend's "All of Me" in 2013. An instant hit, the couple's account gained over 1 million followers in 30 days. 3.4 million additional followers later and a record deal with Republic Records in hand, the Alvarado's reminisce on what they feel in large part was an accidental start of their career.
"It's a partial accident," Michael said during the Grammy Connect panel on Wednesday at YouTube Space LA. "When Vine came along we just put up our iPhone and filmed ["All of Me"] in the living room, and we came up with this half-faced thing by accident because she wasn't wearing makeup and she didn't want her eyes to be seen and it was like 10 o'clock at night and we were really tired. We put it out there and it snowballed."
Us the Duo performed the title track from their debut album No Matter Where You Are at Grammy Connect at YouTube Space LA on February 5th. The couple released the accompanying music video (see below) last fall. The couple's story of success calls attention to the undeniable power and potential social media has to impact career trajectory. As their career began to take shape, it became evident that they would not be able to manage the logistics on their own, so they turned to a label. The Alvarado's continue to tip their hats to the support the label has been able to offer:
"For us it was half accident and half capitalizing on the accident," Michael said. "We're going from doing everything ourselves to having a team," he added. "What we found with the label is that you're really bringing on a team who are experts in A&R [artist and repertoire]. To bring that in is so special. At the end of the day, we can't do everything. Music will always be the most important part of the equation, so now her and I can focus on just that and let the experts do the rest."