Case Study: Cover Success Stories

Cover songs have exploded on YouTube. While most of these are gimmicky, some show off the artists’ raw talent and propel them into online fame and, in some cases, record deals.

Just look at Justin Bieber, currently one of the biggest selling artists in the world, he started his career at the age of 12 on YouTube. His first few uploads were cover songs including a cover of Justin Timberlake’s ‘Cry Me A River’. His videos were picked up online by Scooter Braun, he was introduced to Usher and we all know what happened next. Multimedia sites like YouTube give amateur musicians access to a massive audience, covers can be a great way to reach that audience.

Here’s a look at 3 of our favourite cover song success stories.

First up a lesser known act which is set to be huge… Pamplamoose

Pamplamoose is an American band, made up by Nataly and Jack,who have found themselves a sudden Indie Youtube sensation. Their original cover of Beyonce’s ‘Single Ladies’ gathered 7,882,625 (at the time of writing) and is steadily growing.

Their quirky style has attracted advertisers, which has resulted in the duo’s success recording songs for high profile commericials including ones for Hyundai and Toyota. One of their latest videos is a cover of the ‘Angry Birds’ theme tune which is set to be a hit. Keep your eyes on these two in the coming months, we’re expecting good things from them!

Next up, Boyce Avenue

Boyce Avenue is a group made up of 3 brothers from Florida. In 2007 the brothers started posting videos on YouTube, the majority of which being covers. The first few covers they uploaded included One Republic’s ‘Apoligize’ which (at the time of writing) has received 10,985,157 views, and their cover of Linkin Park’s ‘Shadow of the Day’ (at the time of writing) has received 11,651,026 views.

The boys have also produced their own tracks which have proven to be as popular as their covers. This has resulted in the band being signed by Universal and propelled into the spotlight.

They have a short Australian tour booked for August, before they set off across America and Canada in September.

Now we come to our favourite success story of all, Karmin.

Comprised of Amy and Nick, both musicians met at Berklee College of Music and have found success through YouTube. The cover they did of Chris Brown’s ‘Look At Me Now’ has been picked up on numerous blog sites and became an instant hit, to date the video has had 25,136,505 views and counting.

They typically do hip hop songs with Amy rapping. They have their own distinctive sound which has helped drive their success. Karmin’s youtube channel has a remarkable total upload views of 69,943,650 (at the time of writing).

The band has stayed current by covering popular songs at that moment which means people would stumble across their covers whilst looking for the original. There is another side to Karmin, they are in themselves serious musicians with their own songs which are pretty good. And rumour has it they have just been picked up by a major record label, so expect to see alot more of this duo!

This post is by Zimbalam UK Manager Hannah Donovan @hannahbarracuda

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