Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.
Benny Blanco is far from unknown in the music industry, and even among pop fans. He’s one of the most successful writer-producers of the decade, with hits including Love Yourself, Moves Like Jagger, Teenage Dream, Diamonds and TiK ToK, and three BMI Songwriter of the Year awards. As an artist, he is part of the duo BenZel with fellow producer Two Inch Punch, but had never released anything under his own name… until last week. His debut single Eastside features Halsey and Khalid, and came out through his own Interscope imprint, Friends Keep Secrets. It passed a million Spotify plays in the first 24 hours thanks to a prominent spot on New Music Friday, and has a sweet, funny video with definite viral potential. Other big name producers who have released their own music have proven that just because you can create a hit for someone else doesn’t mean you can do it for yourself: Stargate and Alex da Kid are a couple of recent examples. However, it worked out pretty well for Julia Michaels, because Republic Records marketed her as a new artist who happened to write for others, not relying on her past hits as though they entitled her to success. Anyone else moving out from behind the scenes could learn a lot from her.