How an indie band from Toronto managed to add their music to Fortnite
A Toronto-based indie band recently added one of their songs to Fortnite, and for the five-piece group, it’s a long time coming as they’ve grown in popularity – and the gaming community has welcomed them with open arms. .
It is not uncommon to see games produced with incredible soundtracks, and these titles are often praised for having gorgeous sheet music. However, rarely do we see a group amplifying their success through their connection to the gaming community and certain personalities within it.
This is the case with Good Kid, a group of five Torontonians who have been making music together in recent years, while experiencing exponential growth in social media and their music thanks to the gaming community.
Their music is used by countless professional Fortnite players, and you may have recently heard it through in-game radio on Fortnite.
We got to talk to Good Kid about their recent addition to Fortnite, their relationship with the community, COVID-19 and more.
How five college students made music careers
Good Kid’s Jacob Tsafatinos spoke to Dexerto for a chance to get a taste of how the band has been over the past year and a half, as well as how they all came together to create stellar music.
Their work has been a staple of flagship Fortnite player videos over the years. Some of them have actually participated in local esports events and are all avid esports fans like Fortnite, Valorant, etc.
For those who don’t know, can you briefly explain who Good Kid is and what kind of content you create?
Good Kid is an indie rock band, mixing influences like J-Rock, Indie Rock and Pop Punk into songs that are full of energy and fun! We mainly do music, but we also place great importance on visual art and internet culture. We’re sort of doing whatever we’re interested in, so you’ll see 8-bit remixes of our songs, lo-fi versions with anime edits, ARGs (augmented reality games), a video game we programmed ourselves and a bunch of other stuff.
How was Good Kid born? A group of five guys doing indie music is amazing, but how did you all come together in the first place?
David and I met in high school and had performed in a band together before. The rest of us met while studying computer science at the University of Toronto. I met Michael in a German class actually, and Michael had known Nick and Jon through shared computer lessons. We were all kind of in a transitional phase musically, with other projects running out, and we just started jamming together and we really enjoyed playing music together, so it kind of grew from there. of the.
Interlacing music and video games is a concept that we see all the time, from great soundtracks in games etc. But, one aspect that Good Kid has apparently managed to take care of is the use of your music in YouTube videos, especially Fortnite reels. How did it all come about and what was the reception from professional players and members of the community?
Oh man, there are a lot of things in there. To be honest, we don’t really know how it started. What we do know is that it’s completely community driven. We never contacted anyone to ask them to use our stuff, we just made our music accessible by authorizing it for Twitch and allowing it for Youtube when people ask us to.
My best theory on how it started is that a former FN player (now Valorant) THWIFO was responsible for it all. I remember watching an old game edit video of him years ago and it had one of our songs in it. At the time, I was so happy to see that anyone would use our music in a game montage, but ultimately he got quite a few subscribers (because he’s amazing and makes great videos) and its subscribers have become our fans. Those same followers just became the best players in the world, so it kind of got bigger from there. (I think there is a video of Bugha using one of our songs just before he won the World Cup).
The reception was crazy. The community and pros have supported us so much that they will put our music in their videos, stream it, represent our merchandising, etc. Grim and Subi used our stuff in their videos, Minecraft videos appeared, Smash brothers, and more! It got to the point where our fans are going to offer our music to big streamers who are not even pros because they know it’s free DMCA and that’s how we end up in a Julien Solomita video. . So I have to say the community has worked for us and we really appreciate it!
Not only is your music liked in YouTube videos, but your account is quite active on Twitter itself. Was this a marketing strategy you wanted to test, or was the community so fun to interact with, and what about the gaming community in particular that works for you?
Definitely more of the community just being awesome to interact with. People might not realize it, but we’ve been a part of the gaming community for a long time. We’ve been in Esports tournaments for years, sometimes going to tournaments for games we’re good enough to compete in and playing a ton of games ourselves. Even as I write the answers to these questions, I watch AussieAntics cast FNCS and Liquid Clem fight for his tournament life in TSL 7 (Starcraft tournament, spoiler: he lost).
I think it also bleeds into our art in a way that the community can resonate with. Most of these kids following us have anime profile pictures, and we literally wrote a song on Full Metal Alchemist. So I guess to answer your question about what works in particular for us? I don’t feel like we’re injecting ourselves into a community that we don’t belong to, honestly, to me personally, most of the time it feels more natural than interacting with the music community.
One of the most important events for you recently has been adding some of your music to Fortnite to be played over the radio when you are driving vehicles. How did this opportunity come about and what was it like working with Epic Games?
All thanks to the community. People were tweeting us asking when we would get into the Fortnite car stereo, so we just retweeted someone one day and asked, “If anyone knows how to make this happen, let us know.” Next thing we know, a group of people are tweeting to Epic Games employees and telling them to make this happen. Someone from Epic contacted that day and told us how to submit our music for review. It was nice to work with Epic, super smooth and useful.
What I really liked about working with Epic was that they checked us out when they reached out to us – it wasn’t just lip service. They listened to our music and told us exactly which songs would suit the car stereo best. Then of course having the official Fortnite page retweeting us and seeing Tim Sweeney as our tweet was amazing as well. They certainly did more than we expected.
Are there any plans going forward to expand your reach in the community through streaming or other means?
We’ve played with streaming a lot, it’s just hard to find the time to engage in streaming outside of our main focus of writing songs and practicing together. I think you’ll probably see more streaming out of us just because it’s fun, but it will probably be more ad hoc. I really want to do more interesting outreach / collaboration activities within the community. We need to work on an intro video for Center when he signed FaZe Clan, it was a lot of fun and it all went very organically. I would love to do more stuff like this. I have a bunch of other ideas, I just want to make sure that when we do these things, they feel genuine to us and everyone we collaborate with.
– FaZe Clan (@FaZeClan) March 11, 2021
Has COVID Derailed Performance Opportunities Before You? How did you deal with creating music when Toronto was basically stuck for almost a year?
Haha yeah, that was bad. We had booked a European tour and ready to go and it had to be canceled. We did our best to write music from a distance, but it didn’t go very well. I think for our music in particular it’s really hard to write when we’re not in a live setting where you can feel the sound and the instruments playing with each other. We definitely did our best, but I’ll be honest we made very little progress in the writing during that time.
Now that we’re back in training we’ve written a ton and are back on track to release new things sooner than expected. On the other hand, we were able to do a lot of things during the “downtime” of being stuck at home. We released our second EP! We released a video game, a bunch of remixes, we threw an ARG for our discord. I think it allowed us to focus on a bunch of ideas that we had been playing with for a long time and gave us the opportunity to implement them.
With the restrictions in the world lifted now, can we expect to see you visiting locations and even making an appearance at some gaming events in the future?
Absolutely! We want to tour and play in as many cities as possible. I don’t know what it will look like, but I hope we find out soon. Playing at gaming events would also be a dream come true. I don’t know how many of them do live gigs, but I think they should! I think you will certainly see us there, if not as performers, then as spectators.
A quick acoustic interpretation of Witches. Thanks also for 6k! pic.twitter.com/TZ2Vgvt8Qc
– Good kid (@goodkidband) June 19, 2021
We’ll continue to do our best to create content we’re proud of, so I hope you all hear more of it soon!
It is with great enthusiasm that we hope to see more of the Good Kid within Fortnite and tour the world in the near future, and we thank them once again for the time they have given us for this interview. .