While YouTube was around a decade before, this last decade has really seen a massive change in how people are able to get their music out there. This takes many forms and changing from times past, this no longer requires studio investment – just some imagination and old fashioned elbow grease (and of course, a bit of talent certainly helps!).
The traditional bands have taken to YouTube in various degrees, some just posting up their music videos while others create video blogs, behind the scenes features and much more, however the dramatic shift in how we listen and watch music now is down to the 'amateur' musicians that are creating music content for all to access. For some this will be a hobby, for others it has acted as a gateway to a career in music – usually as a combination of sustained earnings from YouTube itself and commercially selling their music (whether solo or with a band) through the various online music stores. With an obviously metal/rock bias, some of the stand out artists that I’ve been subscribed to are (with links to their YouTube channels):
One of the first YouTube musicians that followed, he has produced countless guitar covers for all kinds of songs. Taking a variety of sources for inspiration he has produced metal guitar covers for pop songs, TV theme tunes, rap, classical and more – and without a doubt he is as big a comic book geek as he is a metal head, producing some fantastic covers of The Transformers (1984) theme tune (a personal favourite of mine!), Spiderman and Star Wars.
Transformers meets Metal
Michael Jackson - Beat It Meets Metal
A musician through and through, he not only runs a recording studio in Norway, he spends a lot of time producing metal covers of songs from numerous sources (usually playing all the parts himself), most often with an accompanying music video to go with it. In addition, he also has his own band, not to mention actually doing his day job! Where does he find the time? Not sure where, but I’m glad he does. Often having his wife and daughter involved in the covers, his videos are usually well themed to the song being covered and will feature a mix of studio performance, costumes and puppets! One of my top 5 music videos of the last decade has to be his cover of Feed Good Inc (see video below)
Feel Good Inc. - metal cover
Blur - Song 2 – Metal Cover
A talented drummer Meytal started by posting up her drumming sessions over various metal and rock songs, she has steadily built a following through YouTube which lead to her starting a band and producing a full album. Despite a few dry spells in content, she still remembers how she made her name and continues to post new drum cover videos on a fairly regular basis.
Pantera – Cowboys From Hell drum cover
MEYTAL - Out of Chaos
Singer Anthony Vincent has put his vocal talents to the test in a variety of ways, however his most popular video style is the one that launched his channel – the 10 second song. Here he takes a popular song and sings it in a variety of styles, switching it up every 10 seconds – not only making some entertaining results but also demonstrating is amazing vocal range (imagine a cover of Kat Perry sung switching between the styles of Nirvana, Run DMC, Boys II Men, Slipknot, Frank Sinatra and more!). He mixes up the formula in various videos, such as 15 songs in 1 style, or covering an entire song in a single style and a variety of collaborations with other performers, the results are typically entertaining.
Bohemian Rhapsody Performed in 42 Styles
10 Songs in the Style of Metallica | Feat. EROCK