Year of the AUX: Dre London’s New Platform AUX Live Hosts Post Malone To Frank Sinatra
Courtesy AUX Live – Rockstar
Post Malone performs at Posty Fest at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, Nov. 2, 2019.
As Post Malone’s manager, Dre London has overseen the rapid rise of one of music’s hottest stars. If all goes as planned, London will soon oversee similarly explosive growth in the streaming world by way of AUX Live, the new platform he launched in March.
London says he began conceptualizing AUX Live in 2019, well before the pandemic began, but the inconsistent quality of coronavirus-era livestreams prompted him to devote more time to developing the platform.
“The idea started growing more when 2020 hit and touring stopped and everyone was sitting looking at their phone,” London tells Pollstar. “That’s when I went into overdrive.”
Choppy streams made London search for “the best way to evolve all these services” in an effort to make the user experience as simple as watching TV.
With AUX Live, he might’ve found an answer. Available on major mobile and smart TV platforms, AUX Live brings together pay-per-view livestreaming, archival concert films, behind-the-scenes footage with artists and even an entertainment news digest. The service starts at $4.99 per month, with pay-per-view livestreams available a la carte for an additional $4.99 a pop. London likens the model to Amazon Prime, which also blends a flat subscription fee with paid add-ons.
While streaming, both live and archival, has surged during the pandemic, London envisions AUX Live supplementing traditional concerts once they return.
“Even if you have an arena show, 18,000 [capacity], everyone’s not going to be able to see that,” says London, outlining plans to livestream festivals and other gigs.
James Thomas – London’s Streaming
Post Malone manager and AUX Live mastermind Dre London.
London’s marquee client is, naturally, among AUX Live’s biggest draws. When the platform launched on March 18, it did so with the exclusive premiere of Malone’s PostyFest performance at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on Nov. 2, 2019.
But, London emphasizes, “I don’t want it to come across like, ‘This is Post Malone’s manager’s platform.’ I want it to come across as a platform for everybody. AUX Live is the platform for the people. I was just the one who came up with the idea and asked Post to support me with it.”
Indeed, the platform extends well beyond Post Malone. Rap is predictably well represented, from “Tupac: Live At The House of Blues,” recorded just two months before the legend’s death, to a film documenting the 2000 “Up In Smoke Tour,” headlined by Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem and Ice Cube.
Elsewhere, AUX Live offers performances by artists across the musical spectrum, from Katy Perry to Willie Nelson to Nina Simone to The Beach Boys to Muse to Frank Sinatra. Meanwhile, music docs on AUX Live capture Nirvana, Metallica, Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and more.
“When we sit down and we talk about music, we don’t talk about one genre,” says London, recounting conversations with Malone, who famously has eclectic music tastes. “[That’s] why we cover everything across the board – because music today isn’t just one genre.”
In fact, London thinks that by “having the kids learn about yesterday,” AUX Live might bridge divides between Malone’s largely Gen Z audience and other generations.
“There’s so many [artists] on AUX Live today that kids are wearing T-shirts [of] and I don’t know if they’ve ever seen them live,” he says with a laugh. “Kids are wearing Led Zeppelin T-shirts, and I don’t know if they’ve seen Led Zeppelin live [on film]! Now, they can go to AUX Live and feel like they’re really there, watching a Led Zeppelin concert or documentary.”
Simultaneously, Malone might win some converts among older demographics. In a sense, that’s old hat for the musician, who averaged $1.76 million grossed per show across 21 arena gigs in early 2020. Lockdown be damned, Malone remained omnipresent in pop culture in 2020, via his infectious single “Circles,” which holds the record for the second-most weeks spent in the Hot 100’s top 10 of any song in history, and livestreams like his April 2020 all-Nirvana set, which raised more than $500,000 for coronavirus relief efforts.
Malone has definitively crossed over, and London expects him to emerge artistically refreshed and ready for the next chapter as the pandemic recedes.
“We’ve been making great music” during the pandemic, says London, hinting at the follow-up to 2019’s Grammy-nominated Hollywood’s Bleeding. “We have almost two projects or something that’s coming and that’s going to be moving forward in 2021.”
On the live side, Malone has festival plays lined up this summer from Montreal’s Osheaga to the U.K.’s Reading and Leeds, and London teases even bigger stages for 2022.
“I’m definitely looking into a few of the options,” he says when asked about Malone’s stadium potential. “I’m having the conversation with a few other managers. We may be doing a little sneak attack in 2022!”
And for those who can’t catch the shows in person? It’s a safe bet they’ll be streaming on AUX Live.