Malaysian rapper Wee Meng Chee, also known as Namewee, raked in over US$849,000 (S$1.14 million) worth of cryptocurrency in just three hours on Nov. 7, after his song's non-fungible tokens (NFTs) sold out, Taiwanese media ETtoday reported.
On the morning of Nov. 7, the Taipei-based celebrity announced the launch of 100 NFTs based on his song, "Go NFT", and expressed doubts that his NFTs would bring him "great fortune".
Then, at 9.43pm on the same day, he took to Facebook to say that he woke up and found that he has became a "rich man", after realising that his song's NFT sold out in a matter of hours.Hot on the heels of his initial success, the rapper also launched 99 NFTs of his latest viral song -- "Fragile", at the price of three Ether (worth S$19,000 at the time of writing) each on NFT platform OpenSea.
Wee recently made headlines and topped YouTube charts with his viral song "Fragile", in which he appeared to poke fun at the Chinese government and ultra-nationalistic Chinese. The song also earned him a ban on Chinese social media site Weibo.
According to him, "Fragile" has racked up over 24.5 million views on YouTube, with audiences mainly from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, the U.S., and Singapore.
Criticised financial institutions and "middlemen"
According to data on NFT platform OpenSea, Wee listed all 100 of his song's NFTs at one Ether (worth S$6,346 at the time of writing), all of which have since been transferred to their new owners.
He described his expletive-laden "Go NFT" song as "the only song dedicated to NFT in the world", while including "F* THE MIDDLE MAN" in the song's description.
The 38-year-old rapper claimed in his Nov. 7 video that he was releasing NFTs and venturing into cryptocurrency as a resistance against financial institutions and the "middlemen", whom he claimed would take a cut of his earnings, even though he was the one who had produced the work.
He also appeared to take issue with digital platforms such as YouTube that would take a commission from his profits through "advertisements and downloads".
The celebrity further pledged that he would not exchange the proceeds of his song's NFTs for cash, and would let them remain as cryptocurrency on the blockchain.
He added that he wanted to "take a stand against the world" alongside his audiences through his works.
"Countless sleepless nights over the past decade"
Responding to Malaysian Chinese-language media Sinchew Daily's report that he had become a millionaire "overnight", Wee said the public only saw his recent success, but failed to see the "countless sleepless nights over the past decade", which he spent on his work.
The rapper also announced that he will be releasing 20 NFTs of another viral song -- "High Pitched" -- at 12pm on Nov. 14.
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Top image via Namewee/Facebook & OpenSea