I launched Humble Angel Records on 26th January 2018 and seeing as we’re closing in on our first year in business I thought I’d share some stats and learnings of how things have went.
Since our first release on 26th January until our last release of 2018 on 23rd November (we didn’t release anything in December as no point in competing with Mariah Carey) we’ve released 47 singles, that’s just over 1 a week.
As you can see from the graphic above from Spotify we’ve achieved 240 million minutes worth of streams up until October 2018 (the cut off point for Spotify’s Wrapped 2018). The real number will be higher than this as I don’t have access to all of my artists stats on Spotify but I’m very pleased with this result. From a standing start of zero to 240 million minutes in 9 months is fantastic.
Investing in artists not songs
My biggest shift over the last 12 months or so has been to move towards a more artist development and long-term approach to the artists I work with. When I first launched the label I was signing artists on a song by song basis but I quickly realised in the fast paced streaming world that it takes a lot of time and effort to break through the 30,000 songs that are released on Spotify each day. My best success has come from artists who I work with over time and invest in more of a long term strategy, maybe by partnering with PR teams, radio pluggers, experienced managers, video creators, sync teams and even putting on live shows.
Don’t get me wrong, we’re still a streaming first label and playlists and algorithms are at the heart of what we do. We’re just expanding to ensure success off platform too and making sure we connect with fans everywhere.
Artist highlights of 2018
Here are some of the best moments and successes from Humble Angel artists of 2018. It’s not all of Humble Angel artists, just a selection. I’ll follow up with more artist updates in a later post.
SLANG is Dan Dare, one of the most creative, talented and authentic artists I’ve worked with. We started 2018 with the release of the Terms and Conditions EP and finished up with the heartfelt See You Again. Dan is one of the best lyricists around and can create the most infectious hooks I’ve ever heard. He’s also an exceptional live artist and this year supported La Fontaines on their UK tour as well as The Manor at the Roundhouse in London. 2019 will see him supporting Gavin James on some UK dates as well as some brilliant new music in February.
Singer/Songwriter Fia Moon smashed it in 2018 with 3 releases on Humble Angel, earning critical acclaim far and wide from the likes of Clash (Settle Down is an absolute banger) to the Official Charts (Settle Down is dazzingly honest and a deceptively catchy pop piece that embodies Fia’s rich and melodic sonic diversity).
Fia also played a Sofar Sounds gig in London, appeared on Reprezent Radio, Fubar Radio and RTE2 in Ireland. Fia is also named as one of the 2FM Rising 2019 list or Irish artists to watch in the coming year.
Houssein is already doing well on platforms like Tik-Tok where he has over 1.5 million fans and over 100 million likes and in 2018 he released 3 singles on Humble Angel records to build on his fan base. 2018 also saw Houssein play his first live shows too including Nickleodeon’s televised “Slimefest” and a support slot for Dusky Grey. Spindle dubbed Houssein “Pop’s Newest Prince” and I think they could be right.
Houssein 2018 highlights…
After 6 is probably best known for his massive club collab with Ryan Blyth, “Show Me” which has racked up over 23 million streams to date. In 2018 he topped the no.1 position in the Music Week Club Charts with “Upside Down” and has plenty more to come in 2019.
Ryan is a gifted singer songwriter and when he’s not playing guitar with SLANG he’s releasing beautiful pop songs like Tired Eyes, which was one of my personal favourite releases of the year. As well as being a prolific songwriter, Ryan is also an ambassador for the I Am Whole mental health charity and helped setup their first gig which saw the likes of Ed Sheeran, Anne-Marie, James Arthur, Olly Murs and more play live together in 2018.
Malia is only 3 singles in but has already racked up over 10 million streams, been tipped by Taylor Swift and supported JoJo on tour in the US. With one of the strongest and unique female voices around and industry heavyweights J Kash and Ross Golan in her camp 2019 will see big things for Malia.
2019 and beyond
There’s much more coming in 2019, we’ve already signed some amazing new artists and we have some exceptional new releases coming from our existing rosta too. We’ll continue to expand, innovate and develop new strategies, new routes to market and an exciting announcement coming January 25th 2019…