Mudiwa Hood, a musician, recently launched a new album called Street Preacher. Now it’s not anything new for an artist to release an album, it’s their art after all. However, when a musician releases a new album and an app along with it, you stop and ask why. That’s exactly what we did and we decided to have a chat with him to talk about his Mudiwa Hood app.
What is the app supposed to do?
For now, it is to help my fans to easily link to all my social sites, sample my music and videos, get updated on all events coming, link them to all online stores selling my music like iTunes and also get them to get in contact with my management easily. For hires and professional invites and appearances. – Mudiwa Hood
The application is available on the Google Play Store if you’d like to download click that link.
Why a Mudiwa Hood app instead of something else.
The reason I asked this question is due to the fact that I noticed that he already has a website and a Facebook page which can provide all the functions that the app does. So I was curious why he thought he needed to have an app. His response for the reason of having a Mudiwa Hood was as follows.
People have a culture of not visiting websites, they will rather go to Facebook not websites… My app if downloaded will keep all my fans connected to me, why is there WhatsApp or Instagram DM when there is Messenger on FB… People are unpredictable so if you are a business person study trends and exploit the opportunities. – Mudiwa Hood
The hit with a miss…
From the conversation I had with him, it all sounds good. However, I think it’s a hit with a big miss. The Mudiwa Hood app is still in pilot mode and it provides the absolute bare necessities for people to access his music. As of today, when you open the app, you’ll be met with a screen that shows his social links, a list of the recent music album and the videos.
You can play the music or the video from the app. For music, it will stream directly from the Mudiwa Hood app but for videos, for me, it streamed the video from VLC. Right here is where the app misses something important. You have to have an active internet connection in order to listen to the music or watch any of the videos.
This might not be a big problem for people in first world countries. But it is a problem locally and it matters because his main fans are in Zimbabwe. If the Mudiwa Hood app allowed people to download the music for offline listening then it would be good for Zimbabweans. As of now, it is not doing anything that other music streaming apps can already offer other than just focusing on that one artist.
So does a musician really need an app?
Now that we have gone through where it missed the mark. The fact that he has done this is a big hit business wise. He has managed to solve the chicken and egg problem by launching the app with an album. That means people will use the app to access the new music album. Apart from that, it is good that he has built quickly and shipped fast.
A musician doesn’t need to have an app and that is exactly why it is good that he has built it and shipped fast. Right now, he has a first movers advantage among local musicians. From the feedback he will get, he can improve the app based on what the people want and not what he thinks people want. So it’s not bad that it has the least features or that it doesn’t have the best design.
One of the things that he hinted to as a feature that will be introduced to the Mudiwa Hood app soon is the ability to purchase his new albums from the app. This should provide lifetime and hopefully offline access to the music. Musicians no longer survive on selling discs anymore and if they want to make it, they need to adapt and utilize technology.
Let us know what you think musicians can do to combat piracy, generate revenue? Do you think this is a potentially good thing for both Mudiwa and his fans? What would you want to see in an app if your favorite musician released an app?