Toa Dunn, Head of Riot Games Music, talked about their recently released album Sessions Vi and told us some behind-the-scenes information about the project.
The Sessions: Vi Album
80.lv: Why did you decide to release Sessions: Vi? What inspired you to work on the project? Did you want to help creators suffering from copyright limitations on Twitch?
Toa Dunn, Head of Riot Games Music: There were multiple reasons why Sessions made sense for us. First, we are avid fans and listeners of the overall style of music. Many of us had been talking about the many applications we personally had for chill music. Second, music copyright is complex. We wanted to help relieve some of our player and fan pain around creating content or streaming but not having a great solution for music. We hope that Sessions: Vi provides a great soundtrack for people to kick back, focus on a project, play games, or just vibe out to. It was also a great opportunity to work with some of our favorite producers and artists.
Looking for Musicians
80.lv: How did you find the right musicians to join the project? Who was responsible for the task? What is in it for artists, is it a good way for less popular bands to promote their music?
Toa Dunn: Working with over 20+ artists at the same time is quite the task, but also a fun part of the process. Our team puts a lot of effort into finding artists that are incredible at their craft, and would also be a good fit for the creative direction of the project.
We believe there are a few key points of value with projects like Sessions. Ideally, it is a project that inspires artists to create and share with others. It's also a great platform to raise the visibility of highly talented artists to our fan base. We ended up finding out some of the artists were avid gamers and even fans of League of Legends before we reached out to them. We see this as an all-around win-win scenario.
80.lv: The compilation sounds like a complete solid music album – were you going for a specific feel/vibe/sound from the beginning or did it start to come together as a chill/relax compilation by itself and you continued to gather more songs in this genre?
Toa Dunn: Our process for Sessions: Vi involved figuring out the overall creative direction for the project. Once we had a solid idea of how it should look, feel, and sound – we then started reaching out to artists that would be a great fit. With that said, we also wanted to make sure to leave plenty of room for the artists (music and visual) to really put their fingerprints on it. We ultimately wanted them to feel proud of their contributions.
80.lv: Are you planning to release another album of copyright-free music in any other genre and if you are, which one could it be, were there any suggestions from the users?
Toa Dunn: We intend to do more of these in the future. We haven't locked in all the details as we want to learn from this first drop. Ideally, we find a way to expand on this if it makes sense.
80.lv: Riot Games Music is a subdivision that has a whole set of separate social media accounts now. What are your plans for this brand in the future? What is there to expect from Riot Games Music?
Toa Dunn: Our social media accounts are ways for us to connect and communicate directly with our fan base. For us, this is just the beginning of where we want to take things. There are a lot of great opportunities ahead, it's really going to be about choosing the ones that fit our journey. In short – expect more from our Music Universe, as well as projects that provide high value and utility for our fans.