It’s happening: Musical.ly lip-synchers going on tour
Has the rise of arena-filling competitive esports left you baffled? Are you, like your elderly correspondent, mystified by the popularity – and earning potential – of the YouTubers and internet currently celebrities cutting their teeth on the live circuit?
Then you could be forgiven for not having heard of Lisa and Lena Mantler, two 15-year-old German twins who just became the first ‘musers’ to amass 20 million fans on Musical.ly.
For the uninitiated, Musical.ly is a video-sharing social app that now boasts more than 40m monthly active users. Popular among tweens, the majority of its content consists of musers lip-synching to pre-recorded backing tracks – although since the decline of Vine, many have also branched out into producing more general short-form video, such as Vine-style comedy skits.
The Shanghai-based company behind the app, Musical.ly, Inc., has signed licensing deals with all major labels and publishers – which in return receive a bump in sales/streaming when the most popular musers post a new clip. “When stars ask users to post, it can be potent,” writes Forbes. “Last year a promotion of Selena Gomez’s ‘Kill ’em with Kindness’ rendered 1.3m Musical.ly clips and 34.6m likes, reportedly boosting the song’s performance, according to her label Interscope Geffen A&M.”
A sample of Lisa and Lena’s video output can be seen below:
The twins (pictured) “shared their first video, a six-second black-and-white rendition of ‘Treble Heart’ by Anna Graceman,” in August 2015, reads a press release from Musical.ly, “and since [then have] posted clips that have become more sophisticated with lighting, choreographed moves and matching outfits.”
To coincide with reaching the 20m milestone, Lisa and Lena have announced plans for a European tour, kicking off with three shows in the UK jointly produced by Global and WME.
Dates announced so far are below:
What a time to be alive.
Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.