Musician Websites

Independent musician websites have become the David to the traditional music industry’s Goliath.

More and more artists are embracing technology and breaking the stranglehold the world’s largest music companies have had over the success of emerging artists.

One such artist is Mike Rosenberg also known as Passenger. Passenger has harnessed the power of the web to rocket from a completely unknown busker to one of the most popular acts in Australia today.

Our support of Mike began as a love job.  We liked his music. We liked his approach and we liked him as a person.

He had a growing fan base on Facebook (7, 000 likes, he now has almost 200,000) but no website, so we dived in to learn all we could about musician website development and to get a handle on everything that was possible. As it turns out there is a lot you can do and most of it was easy to do within WordPress.

What the Musician Wanted / Needed

Mike wanted to leverage his facebook presence to drive traffic to the site and enable his growing fan base to listen to his tracks, view videos, book tickets and purchase merchandise. Easy! The challenge was that he had already established the means to do all those things through independent services.

Using Facebook extensions he’d managed to draw everything he wanted to do into a single location, Facebook, albeit using multiple Facebook Pages and sometimes overlapping the functionality.

What we Delivered

Mike didn’t want to have to revisit the set up process in yet another system – so we started hunting around to find ways of hooking into the extensions he was already using. What we ended up building was a central repository for his 3rd party feeds from Soundcloud, YouTube, Songkick, Facebook, Twitter. It was an aggregate feed reader of sorts that meant he could continue updating the services he was already familiar with and his website would automatically update.

Our challenge was to ensure the user experience was up to scratch and to make sure the visual appearance was consistent with the overall Passenger branding.  Not such an easy thing to do when there is inconsistent styling across each of the feeds.

Aggregate feed sites have a tendency to look mushed together as well – which we wanted to avoid – so we started researching bands and performers that we thought had done it well

We really liked what the guys from Boy and Bear had done with their social media by hiding it beneath a drop down – so we borrowed the idea and incorporated it into the final design. Other websites of note were the Triple J Unearthed website, Harvest Festival and Fink.

The result was what you can see live to this day at

Wireframe for the passenger musician website's home page

Original Passenger website wireframe





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