My latest interview features Robert Anton, a musician from New York City who first ventured online as a means to promote his music, and discovered a much bigger world.
“I’m a singer, songwriter, performer, music publisher and I am here on YouTube basically to promote my music – but with that comes a lot of other things. Now I have four channels on YouTube, and across those platforms I think what I’m doing is mostly just getting my voice out there. I’m sharing some of my opinions and some of my life experiences, and interacting with people from all over the world.”
I first met Robert Anton at Vidcon – the YouTube content creator’s conference – almost a year and a half ago. In an event filled with over-the-top enthusiasm, he stood out. I thought that was because he’d just been notified that he’d been accepted in the YouTube Partner’s program. It wasn’t just that. If you watch him on YouTube, you soon realize that Robert simply projects energy.
While his goal isn’t YouTube in and of itself, he’s become totally immersed in the online world, “I think it has just become a part of my person, my being, my existence. I always tell friends that YouTube is such a counter community – a counter-culture I should say, where we are all just living online. Over time, his YouTube community has extended into “real life,” in that he’s met longtime YouTube friends offline. The two worlds have begun to merge, “I am just sharing my full existence, and hopefully that will bring people back to the music.”
Though Robert returned to the idea of promoting his music as his prime motivation for being online, it’s clear that his interaction with the YouTube and social media community has become more than simply a marketing tool. His channel and his website have enjoyed visits from dozens of countries around the world, even interacting with some fans by using Google’s translate feature.
Looking and interacting with other artists on YouTube has also inspired Robert in his own creative work.
“I think a great thing about this whole sharing community of YouTube is that we all kind of feed off each other,” and not in a negative way, he hastens to add, “one idea leads to another, we build up on each other’s way of going about things and each other’s experiences and it becomes this kind of global, world-wide collaboration.”
Thanks to platforms like YouTube, creativity across borders is a reality to more and more people. While there have already been several social and political movements worldwide that fueled by social media, Robert’s description of a “global, world-wide collaboration” hints at a one aspect of creative social technology whose impact may one day be the most profound of all.
Check out Robert at: