The singer of the viral TikTok song “Crypto Boy” teams up with Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova for an NFT drop benefiting the Center for Reproductive Rights.
Salem Ilese, the singer of “Crypto Boy” that has gone viral across TikTok and Twitter, has partnered with Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova and released a “Crypto Boy” NFT collection on Tuesday. Proceeds from the sales of the NFTs will go to the Center for Reproductive Rights.
Ilese first posted the song’s original version on TikTok last week with an open verse challenge and stitched videos by July, Sad Alex, and Good Problem. It has since gone viral across TikTok and Twitter, with millions of views.
Crypto Boys’ Response to “Crypto Boys”
The chorus of Ilese’s song goes, “I don’t care about your crypto, boy/Not even one bit-(coin)/CEO of being un-em-ployed.” This seemingly tongue-in-cheek critique of delusional crypto devotees came just as the crypto market unraveled last week.
According to Ilese, “Crypto ₿oy” is a wake-up call for all the chart-watchers, candle-counters, and JPEG-flippers that find a way to bring crypto into any conversation no matter what it’s about. We all know them—checking OpenSea like it’s Instagram, obsessing over prices, holding this, shorting that, and being unable to focus on anything except Discord.”
And while Ilese was somewhat prepared for the repercussions of her song, what she didn’t count on was the overwhelming response to it. According to the singer, her inbox exploded with swarms of direct messages from no less than crypto boys themselves imploring her to turn the viral song into NFTs.
“When everyone started reaching out about turning it into an NFT, I was thinking, ‘Ok… could be a cool way to enter into the space,’” she said in an interview. However, the risk of hypocrisy wasn’t lost on her: “I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t going to turn into a crypto boy.”
Addressing the Clamor
To address the clamor from self-confessed crypto boys and other NFT enthusiasts, Ilese collaborated with Pussy Riot founder Nadya Tolokonnikova and launched an NFT series to support a charity for reproductive rights. The series has 1,973 NFTs featuring a full version of “Crypto Boy” and custom art created by Tolokonnikova.
All 1,973 NFTs in the collection dropped on Sound XYZ on Tuesday, May 24, making it the biggest drop in the history of Sound XYZ. Mint price was Ξ .1, or roughly $190.
“I’m stoked and super grateful to be working with Nadya,” said Ilese. “She’s just such an awesome force in that space.”
Tolokonnikova became controversial in March when she launched UnicornDAO, a fund for female, non-binary, and LGBTQ+ artists working in Web3. The funding was Tolokonnikova’s effort to “tackle patriarchy in Web3” to fight gender inequality in the NFT space and the art world. Surprisingly, it raised $4.5 million.
In the same month, the Pussy Riot founder raised $6.75 million from the sales of an NFT portraying the Ukrainian flag. The money was for Ukraine’s war efforts against Russia.
“Salem hit me up asking if I wanted to create an artwork for Crypto Boy; I’m obsessed with the song, so it was an immediate YES, PLEASE,” said Tolokonnikova. “I co-founded UnicornDAO, which seeks to subvert crypto bro culture and fund womxn, non-binary and LGBTQ+ digital artists, so Crypto Boy couldn’t be more perfect to me.”
The May 24 drop generated a total sales of Ξ 86.4 or about $169,000 (at the time). Ilese even posted a receipt confirming the successful turnover of the proceeds to America’s Charities.
Following the May 24 drop, all holders of the Crypto Boy NFTs will receive a free airdrop of the remix version. This version features July, Sad Alex, and Good Problem.
All proceeds from the original and remix versions for the NFTs, and even their secondary sales, will go to the Center for Reproductive Rights.
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