Five Years Of SoundCloud

Our portfolio company SoundCloud turned five years old yesterday. To celebrate they posted this 6 minute clip where 5 soundclouders tell their stories. What I like so much about this is that each of the 5 soundclouders have very different talents, very different use cases, and very different stories. Happy Birthday SoundCloud


Comments (Archived):

  1. Donna Brewington White

    I think my very first SoundCloud recording was to congratulate them when you announced their initial USV funding.Congratulations and Happy Birthday, SoundCloud!

    1. awaldstein

      I’ve never got one of these!

      1. Donna Brewington White

        No time like the present.

        1. awaldstein

          I’ll send you the date and we can do a Skype, sip on a glass of wine and get caught up.

          1. Donna Brewington White

            Ah — I thought you meant a SoundCloud account.Definitely — that sounds like so much fun. We can have a virtual birthday celebration.BTW, standing right across from a vineyard in that photo. (Had no idea that I would have that huge photo attached to my comment — may have thought twice.)

          2. Russell

            It is a great photo! A winning smile!!

          3. William Mougayar

            That’s a great pic!

          4. JimHirshfield

            yeah, embeddable media in comments…it’s a thing…fairly new thing. So when you put that URL in the comment, you didn’t expect the SoundCloud widget (w/photo) to appear, did ya?

          5. CJ

            An awesome thing at that.

          6. JimHirshfield


          7. fredwilson

            Not online so can’t see it. But I love the sound of this

          8. Donna Brewington White

            No pun intended?

          9. JimHirshfield

            This is a test…

          10. Donna Brewington White

            Although I am glad to see it reverted to a link when the thread began to lengthen! Not sure I want to be a poster girl. 🙂

          11. Donna Brewington White

            BTW @JimHirshfield:disqus I like the new Disqus feature where you can see that someone is typing a response — conducive to engagement. I stayed on my phone a few moments longer than I might have otherwise.

          12. JimHirshfield

            Good to know! We used to have this feature. Brought it back by popular demand.

          13. Matt A. Myers

            They should tell you if it’s someone you like or get along with or guess if the sentiment will be positive or negative – so you can decide to ignore it if it makes sense…

          14. Donna Brewington White

            Lean into the suspense, dude.

          15. Matt A. Myers

            Probably need to practice that more.

          16. Matt A. Myers

            Is Disqus using a third-party service to do this or are they building in-house for the most popular?

          17. JimHirshfield

            yes /ambiguity

          18. Matt A. Myers

            😛 So helpful.. I imagine at Disqus’ usage scale, it’d simply be cheaper and easier to do it in-house..

          19. Timothy Meade

            Careful, you might accidentally enable an old CompuServe format that is making reading stuff on the web harder.256-bit very jumpy videos. (edit: 256 color palette, 8-bit of course)

          20. CJ

            I believe the phrase is “I meant to do that.” 🙂

    2. Kirsten Lambertsen

      Nice! What a great voice. Will you narrate my life?

      1. LE

        Agree. Very “PBS”.

      2. Donna Brewington White

        Thank you, Kirsten — although to get the same effect we’d have to record at 3:00 a.m. when I’m trying not to awaken the dog. 😉

      3. Matt A. Myers

        Makes me think she could do a “The Nature of VC” similarly to David Suzuki’s “The Nature of Things.”

    3. David Noël

      That’s so awesome, Donna. Thank you very much.

  2. jason wright

    five years. so young. when did you invest Fred?what’s the average duration of your investments before you exit?

    1. fredwilson

      We invested in 2009 or 2010. Can’t recall exactly I’ve known them since around the time they launchedAvg hold period is 7 years

      1. Salt Shaker

        Wish SC still had a desktop app too?

      2. jason wright

        …and what do you think is the average age of the companies you invest at the time you invest?

        1. fredwilson

          maybe a year old.

  3. William Mougayar

    Congratulations!Like Twitter during the opening bell, celebrating by highlighting your users seems to be a trend, and that’s a good thing. A product is as powerful as the effects it has on its users.

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Very appropriate for a UGC platform, isn’t it.I love this aspect of the social web, that users partner in the development process. Along the same lines, the social web is ushering in a new era of consumer empowerment and this is exciting.

    2. Matt A. Myers

      These products only exist because of the users. Users, people give products power – products facilitate it, though don’t inherently have it.

  4. Tom Labus

    Congrats to all

  5. CJ

    I’m loving SoundCloud, it’s become my #1 music discovery platform just slightly ahead of Hypemachine. SC has a lot of the breaking new songs before anyone else.

    1. Donna Brewington White

      I love the ability to simply capture a sound. There is a beautiful simplicity in that. One of my most popular was capturing a sudden rainfall. Well in all honesty popular because Fred reblogged it on Tumblr. Probably not what will monetize them but a nice benefit riding on the coattails of more lucrative aspects of the product. I love the variety demonstrated in their clip…inspiring ….gained some new ideas about how to maximize use.

      1. Matt A. Myers

        I just use an Android app called Easy Voice Recorder. It does the trick for what I need.Does SoundCloud have this same kind of voice recording feature in their app – and that you can keep private?

        1. Donna Brewington White

          yes — you can easily go into the app and record something. You can check off “private” vs. “public”. The good thing though is that if you ever want to share it, you have a link — and you can also access on web.There is a freemium limit but I haven’t reached it yet.On another matter, just DM’d you.

    2. David Noël

      That’s so great to hear, Malcolm. Thank you for being with us.

  6. Matt Zagaja

    This is awesome. I remember encountering and intermittently using SoundCloud a few years ago, but the platform really started to stick out to me as a great resource after I left college and I discovered that Harvard was posting audio of forums and panels on there. One of my favorites is a screening and discussion of the movie Game Change which is at… for any other political nerds out there. I also have listened to lots of Robert Scoble’s interviews as well as covers and remixes of music. SoundCloud has also taken a position as my default sound recording app on my iPhone. I don’t share everything, but it’s so convenient and easy to use to keep things backed up.

    1. Matt A. Myers

      Sound as its own context is an obvious one – plenty fits within it – though took someone long enough to build a platform out for it.Second time I’m hearing about basic sound recording. I should give it a go..

  7. pointsnfigures

    Congrats on five. More financing for them soon I am sure. I haven’t messed around with them much. But today I found this on there.… Love me some Jeff Beck.

    1. Salt Shaker

      Thanks for sharing–Great track! Joss Stone’s voice and Beck’s guitar sound great together. Wish JB would book some more gigs with Rod, the old blues Rod, not the modern-day crooner.

      1. pointsnfigures

        Saw Rod’s Merry Christmas CD at Whole Foods checkout line. I don’t think I want to hear him with Jeff Beck anymore! #feelingoldrememberwhenrodwasarebel

        1. Salt Shaker

          LOL…Hey, the guy has to make a livin! Only one step away from hosting infomercials for Time-Life music.

    2. fredwilson

      so good.

  8. kirklove

    Congrats to Alex, Eric, David, Thom, and the entire SoundCloud family. Very grateful you exist. Thanks and Happy Birthday.

    1. David Noël

      Thank you my friend

  9. eneve

    I use SoundCloud everyday. Not only to share my music with the world, but the serendipity of the site is amazing! I always come across something new and unexpected!

  10. Paul Sanwald

    I’m a huge fan of soundcloud, I use it all the time to share music with friends/family/colleagues. just on tuesday I posted a jobim tune that I recorded at a colleague’s’s my site:

    1. Donna Brewington White

      This is YOU playing? You are gooood.

      1. Paul Sanwald

        I really appreciate that donna, it is me playing all the instruments. I’ve worked really hard at music for most of my life, so it’s nice to hear. thank you!

  11. FlavioGomes

    Love SoundCloud. I’ve discovered great independent music and its UX makes posting sound files a snap. Great resource for artists of all types

    1. Cima

      I was about to say the same thing when I saw your comment, along with the others similar comments. Found out about SoundCloud through A VC. SoundCloud’s user interface gets easier the more one uses it. There’s always some room for improvement, like in search. But all in all, it’s a great product.All the best to SoundCloud!

  12. Donna Brewington White

    Was kind of hoping this would turn into a SoundCloud sharefest. Also have this fantasy of using SoundCloud on a given day to share our comments. Or maybe written and also voice recorded.

    1. JimHirshfield

      There are some nice SoundCloud posts in the thread.

  13. Gahe

    A significant anniversary and hope that I could do better then developed and more. Happy Birthday Soundcloud

  14. David Noël

    Thank you for spreading the word and love, Fred. We’re happy that you and team USV are part of the family. Thanks to the entire USV team for your continued dedication and support.