Warner Music Group Invests in Artiphon to Create Musical Instruments that Everyone Can Play

Mar 28, 2019 · 3 min read

Artiphon is the First Investment from the WMG Boost Fund

Following a million-dollar Kickstarter, Artiphon is expanding its smart instrument platform for the next generation of digital musicians

NEW YORK, NY — (March 27, 2019) — Artiphon, a music creation startup based in Nashville, TN, announced today a $2M seed round led by Warner Music Group (WMG). Artiphon’s 2015 Kickstarter remains the world’s largest crowdfund for a musical instrument (over $1.3 million), and was named among TIME Magazine’s best inventions of the year.

Artiphon’s first product, the INSTRUMENT 1, is a groundbreaking multi-instrument designed for beginners and pros alike. Patented technology allows users to play multiple instrument styles like guitar, violin, piano, and drums on the same device. The INSTRUMENT 1 plugs directly into a broad range of software like Apple’s GarageBand on phones, tablets, and computers, extending the playability of music apps beyond the screen.

“Artiphon designs musical interfaces that adapt to the way you play, inspiring people to create music who might not pick up a classic instrument,” says Mike Butera, Artiphon’s founder/CEO and Ph.D. in Sound Studies. “You don’t have to be a photographer to express yourself with photos and videos on Instagram, and now you don’t have to be a trained musician to have fun playing and creating music.”

Artiphon is the first publicly announced investment from WMG Boost, Warner Music’s seed fund created to support innovative startups and entrepreneurial growth in the music industry.

Jeff Bronikowski, SVP, Global Digital Business Development — Head of Innovation & Emerging Technology at WMG said: “One of the goals of the Boost fund is to foster growth in areas where technology and content intersect. As true innovators in music creativity, Artiphon is a strong example of the types of companies and products we seek to support. They’ve already expanded the concept of the musical instrument as a smart, connected device and we’re excited to help them drive the future of interactive music.”

WMG joins a group of Nashville-based angels in this round. Artiphon has previously raised capital from Steve Case (co-founder of AOL), 500 Startups, and others.

Recent hires at the company include Doug Provisor (Avid/Digidesign, Line 6, Propellerhead) as Chief Revenue Officer, and Neal Chapman (SpaceX, Applied Minds) as Director of Products. The INSTRUMENT 1 and Artiphon’s founders were featured on national TV in the inaugural episode of T-Pain’s School of Business (Fuse.tv), and the company recently partnered with Ace Hotel’s Artist in Residence program in NYC. For further content and campaigns, check out Artiphon’s blog and Instagram.

“We’re building a future where instruments, software, and content are all seamlessly connected, so users can just have fun playing,” Butera says. “Artiphon’s goal is to empower the next billion musicians with adaptive technology that augments their creativity.”

About Artiphon

Founded in 2011, Artiphon is reimagining musical instruments as adaptive products that tap into the power of mobile apps and software. The INSTRUMENT 1 is the highest-raising crowdfund for a musical instrument, and was named one of TIME’s best inventions of the year. Artiphon is headquartered in Nashville, TN, with key team members on East and West Coasts.

About Warner Music Group

With its broad roster of new stars and legendary artists, Warner Music Group is home to a collection of the best-known record labels in the music industry including Asylum, Atlantic, Big Beat, Canvasback, East West, Elektra, Erato, FFRR, Fueled by Ramen, Nonesuch, Parlophone, Reprise, Rhino, Roadrunner, Sire, Spinnin’, Warner Bros., Warner Classics, and Warner Music Nashville, as well as Warner/Chappell Music, one of the world’s leading music publishers, with a catalog of more than one million copyrights worldwide.


For inquiries contact Jacob Gordon (co-founder & CMO): press@artiphon.com

For images and press resources, visit artiphon.com/press

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