Lisbon-based Musiversal has raised €1.36 million in a seed round led by Shilling. The service aims to put the creative power and quality of studio musicians in the hands of every songwriter, sans studio, and at a fraction of the price. The funding is expected to fuel further growth with the ultimate goal of quadrupling user numbers. To date, the platform has raised €2.51 million.
While the global pandemic locked musicians out of live performances and studio recording sessions, Musiversal stepped in and proposed a solution. Billed via a monthly subscription, the startup provides a marketplace for musicians, producers, and sound engineers to do what they do, but from home.
Taking things one step further, Musiversal does the unthinkable in the music industry; it actually curates a stable of studio musicians AND pays them in recurring monthly revenues. Another way to say this is, Musiversal provides a steady stream of income to members of an industry where steady and income very rarely exist in the same sentence.
Stability in the music industry? Say it ain’t so! But, yes, it IS!
Now before we go any further here, let me address the elephant in the room. As a musician myself, my very first thought was, “Can’t this all be done with direct injection and/or midi tracks?” And the answer is, yes, of course, it can, but unless you’re Prince, Paul McCartney, or John Paul Jones, something tells me that dedicated studio players are going to blow whatever sound you’ve been able to muster, straight out of the water.
Recordings between all musicians are done via a live stream, and are available to the composer for download within 24 hours. However, I do have to wonder just how the startup is dealing with the dreaded latencey issue. I’ve participated, or tried to participate, in more than a few zoom-based jams, and the lack of, “we’re all feeling the same beat here” has killed more sessions than I’d care to mention.
The Musiversal standards call for a minimum 30mb upload/download speed, but even with mine doubling that, I do wonder how lag is being dealt with, particularly with current “on-staff” musicians spread across a range of geographies.
Lisbon’s Shilling led the seed round, with existing investors LC Ventures, REDangels, and Best Horizon all contributing. In addition to the VC funding, Musiversal has also benefitted from €310,000 provided via the Portugal 2020 Programme, an initiative from FEDER.