Florida Georgia Line’s Brian Kelley and his wife, Brittney, aim to introduce country fans to the NFT community with the June launch of Chill Cowboy Country Club. The couple teamed with WHY&HOW CEO and Founder Bruce Kalmick and WHY&HOW Ventures President Bryan Bulte for the collection.
Those who purchase one of 5,000 non-fungible tokens available on mint day will gain exclusive membership into the club, which will include VIP access to concerts, the Chill Cowboy Fest, unreleased music and merch. The limited NFT collection features 5,000 unique “Chill Cowboys and Cowgirls” tokens priced at $500 each.
A token will serve as one’s digital identity and open both metaverse and in real life experiences. Each token is created with more than 260 individual traits – from cowboy hats and expressions to clothing and accessories – that diversifies each cowboy and cowgirl with some NFTs rarer than others. The cowboys and cowgirls are designed by Benedict Aiteobhor (Invisible Friends NFT) and the collection includes 30 ultra-rare 1 of 1 NFTs. Brittney Kelley likens the limited edition NFTs to the days of collecting Beanie Babies or baseball cards, but with the Chill Cowboy Country Club there are more perks.
“This is more than just a piece of art or a picture,” Brian Kelley tells me. “This is an experience. This is a club. This is all about the fans.”
Founders Brian and Brittney Kelley alongside Kalmick and Bulte aim to create a safe space for country music fans to learn about Web3 with both education elements and entertainment perks while pushing the boundaries of what’s expected from the metaverse and beyond.
“What’s really special about this is that we are the first generation to shape and create Web3 and this NFT space,” Brittney says. “We want to build a community and bring like-minded people together both online and in real life.”
A major goal of the Chill Cowboy Country Club NFT collection is inclusivity. Bulte, who joined WHY&HOW Ventures in early 2021 after 10 years in venture capital, was looking at projects that married musicians and ventures when the Kelleys approached him. Their idea was to launch as a genre instead of one artist-centric NFT collection.
“We believe there’s strength in numbers,” Kelley says. “Not just by artists doing it, but really developing a community.”
An artist management and music company, WHY&HOW will leverage its networks and artists for the NFT collection. Artists who have already signed on to be founding partners of Chill Cowboy Country Club include Chase Rice, Danielle Bradbery, BRELAND, RaeLynn, Tyler Braden, Drake White and Halle Kearns. Songwriter Liz Rose and Duck Dynasty’s Jep and Jessica Robertson also are founding partners.
“We have a lot of managers that are going to be partners in this,” Bulte says. “We really want it to be very intimate and [to offer] exclusive access.”
Bulte says one of the biggest challenges ahead of the collection’s launch is teaching the community about NFTs. The team is already dedicating resources to education as the website and social media pages offer facts and videos on NFTs and its surrounding culture.
“It’s a challenge,” Bulte says, “but I think it’s also a big opportunity. … I see a massive disruption in the music industry via NFT.”
In addition to providing fans exclusive access, the Chill Cowboy Country Club NFT collection has a charity arm that will raise money through its community with a focus on music education and scholarships. “One of the biggest things that we’re excited about is being able to give back to the community through music and songwriting,” Brittney says.
Brian and Brittney say the NFT community will be able to participate and create its future Chill Cowboy Fest. An annual two-day retreat is also in the works that only NFT holders will be able to attend.
“Our goal is to give more access and more value to the fans,” Brian says. “We love building experiences and so this is just another form of us getting to host people, connect people and do it in ways where it’s different where people can take these memories with them forever.”
As the NFT market continues to grow, with OpenSea having surpassed one million active user wallets on the platform in January, Bulte says NFTs are here to stay.
“We’ve already seen them provide value that cannot be replaced,” Bulte says. “I think the sky’s the limit on what we can do.”
With the Chill Cowboy Country Club NFT collection launch in June, the founders hope to add to the growing NFT marketplace while bringing the country community along for the ride.
“We feel like we’re filling a need and a void that’s in this space, that’s in the industry and in the NFT space, with these great utilities,” Brian says. “We’re passionate, we’re full of energy behind this, ready to go full steam ahead and see what the future looks like. And hopefully be a part of creating it.”