Tamil musician sells NFT of phone demo for Rs 1.5 crore to Metakovan of Beeple fame

Independent Tamil musician Kaber Vasuki has sold a phone demo of his song ‘Vasanam’ as a non-fungible token (NFT) for 50 ETH — valued at nearly Rs 1.5 crore at the time of sale. This is the biggest reported sale of an NFT by an Indian artist amid an unprecedented interest in digital works.

The buyer: Vignesh Sundaresan aka Metakovan, whose trust purchased a digital collage named “Everydays: The First 5,000 Days” by an artist named Beeple for nearly $70 million.

Metakovan bought the NFT for ‘Vasanam’ on May 11 as a personal purchase while Beeple’s Everydays was bought by his Metapurse Fund in an online auction in March. ETH is abbreviation/symbol for a cryptocurrency named Ethereum.

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Kaber said he got the idea for making an NFT when he started researching on cryptocurrencies and blockchains earlier this year. “Once the first few NFT sales by artists were announced in the media, I realised this might be a way for me to raise funds for my music too,” he told this reporter.

Metakovan feels that popular, mainstream music predominantly focuses on mass markets which cater to majority tastes, and in the process the smaller markets are crushed—and it is here that NFTs play a big role.

“India is a multicultural place. But culture is forced to cater to a mass market. With crypto, and NFTs in particular, you now have a new patronage model, a micro market model, an economy that prizes the producer. The relevance of all this is that art need no longer be produced just for the mass market. It can be produced at very high quality, even for a niche audience, a people that resonate strongly with it,” he replied in a written response to questions asked.

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