In an era where instant communication is the norm, the Internet has enabled creators to easily share their work and build an audience. It has also enabled creators to widely share the moves and milestones they make in their careers, even more personal ones.
Throughout music history, artists from Prince to Puff Daddy have changed the names they use to create and publish new music, but have had limited ability to announce these changes to a global audience. Today, artists have greater ability to broadcast these personal moments in their careers through the Internet, allowing fans to easily adapt and continue their support.
That’s exactly what Mark Redito did, “premiering” his new name through the release of a new song on SoundCloud.
Mark Redito, formerly known as Spazzkid, is a long-time SoundCloud creator who joined the platform more than six years ago. Mark is also part of our On SoundCloud Premier program.
With SoundCloud being Mark’s primary home to release music and connect with fans, it was important for him to ensure that his fans could still easily find his profile and his music, even if his name changed. SoundCloud’s Community team was able to help make the swap of his profile URL easily so all of his content, from tracks to stats, stayed intact. Learn more about changing a name on SoundCloud here.
We chatted directly with Mark about why he changed his name and how SoundCloud continues to be part of his story of growth below.
Why did you decide to change your artist name?
I felt uncomfortable using the word “spaz” in my artist name once I found out that it has derogatory meanings. I don’t want my music and my art to be represented by a hurtful word. Also, I have been using the name “Spazzkid” for close to 10 years now. I’ve grown so much as an artist in the past two years and I’ve felt disconnected from the moniker.
I wanted it sooner but the logistics of going through a name change as an emerging artist is huge. We knew we wanted to change the name a year back, so we got the ball rolling as soon as we decided. With the upcoming single releases, we thought, “it’s going to be a great opportunity to change my name together with new releases.” The new song(s) have such a different sound; still sounds like me but hopefully much more mature.
How did you communicate the name change?
I have been talking about the name change within my close circles and they saw that coming. I sent a letter to all my friends who are music writers and journalists regarding the name change a few days before announcing it through my social media. I am very active in social media and it makes sense that I make the announcement there.
How has the reaction been from your fans?
It was such an outpour of support and love! I’m very grateful for such loving fans and supporters!
Will the music or sound you have change accordingly as well?
Regardless of the name change, I am somebody who always wants to pursue new sounds and aesthetics. Hopefully the upcoming music would still be relatable and also feel like a progression from my old material.
How has SoundCloud helped you grow as an artist, especially in this time period of transition for you?
It is a reliable platform to share my music! It’s also such a great platform to connect with fans, peers and collaborators. Sharing my music through SoundCloud has led to so many opportunities to further my career as a musician. The process of transition has been very smooth. The tech support was really swift in assisting in the changeover.
What is the weirdest or most interesting that’s happened to you on SoundCloud?
Not really weird but it’s funny that three out of five messages I get everyday on SoundCloud are from beauty vloggers asking permission for music usage on their videos.
Any notable stats you’d like to share with us?
I am ecstatic that I am now reaching 43k! I remember two years ago when I was happy with having 1k followers! This is such a huge thing for me and I’m very grateful! I’m also very excited that all these people who I look up to are now following me on SoundCloud: Giraffage, Daedelus, Djemba Djemba, Starslinger, among others.
Are you a creator who has also changed your artist name? Share your experience or thoughts with us in the comments below.