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ROCK MUSIC: Van GoGo on the Rise

Whatever it takes to create their Success

A year ago, we had the pleasure of interviewing Van GoGo, (see past interview here: THE KARMA OF A ROCK BAND | The Los Angeles Tribune) a new and rising star in Rock Music. It was time to catch and see what had been happening. Especially since they rolled out a new single and are in the studio for an album.

New Single on YouTube and Spotify

Click on the pic to listen to song.

I wrote over a year ago that for me there is no difference between any type of a startup business and the rollout of a new artist/band. So, in the normal business world we call the measurable success customer traction, and that will then be compared to the industry average. Let’s see how Van GoGo has been doing in the last year?

How about?

1.1 Million Streams
7.9 Million Playlist Reach

I have to say that these are impressive results for the coming-out year. Their top-ranking song “White Flags” was streamed 212,461 times. According to my research 22,000 artists had at least 256,000 monthly views. Van GoGo is about at 33% which makes me hopeful that they did strike a chord with the audience.

Van GoGo on the Rise

Van GoGo

Let’s not forget launching any type of business and in particular a new Rock Band was happening in the “dark ages” – with COVID restrictions throughout the country touring was not an option. And that has a major impact in multiple ways. Fans love to see you and will embrace your music and the band. And also, on the economic level 1.1M stream doesn’t make you rich either.

Spotify’s average payout last year (2021) was at $0.00492 per stream. The US federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, which works out at around $1,260 per month based on a 40 hour week. For artists to hit this amount, they need roughly 256k monthly listeners on Spotify.

You must have a passion for music

At these levels of income, it doesn’t make you rich and like any startup company it will take time to rise to the popularity level of an Aerosmith. But as I said there are many parallels between the business world and the artist world. Before any startup really makes it – it is on average a 12-year journey. Facebook wasn’t built in a year.

Impressive Entrepreneurs

In my recent interview with Jason Schaller (Guitarist at Van Go Go) it became again apparent that their journey in the business world has taught them valuable lessons that they have applied to Van GoGo as well. You do what it takes. So, one of the needed strategies in the music business is to be on the Radio.

Van GoGo never signed with a label because they are self-published. So here goes the opportunity that the label pushes you onto the radio stations. This was obviously not an option. Did this stop Van GoGo? NO! When it is too expensive to pay a middleman to get you onto the radio, or on your own attempts – some radio stations tell you “You sound dated” – what is the cure?

Invention is the mother of necessity

As true entrepreneurs they found the solution, teamed up with one of the Greats in the music industry (someone who has a history of predicting the next big thing – and we know Van GoGo is it!) and formed a company called RockNacho ( This is it. Because now RockNacho is gaining a life of it’s own and other artists like to work with them.


So, Jason filled us in. Surprisingly their biggest following is in upstate New York, with radio stations picking up organically the songs of the band, and the online fan base is strongest in Buffalo, NY. Not surprisingly, Van GoGo has understood that data analytics are key to success. Online marketers have known this for quite some time, but it is now also becoming apparent in the music industry.

What insiders say

While writing the article I came across Dusty Rose who said: “I am impressed with the drive the band has. There is a good beat that as a drummer I can really appreciate”. And Vlad T. at RockAtNight wrote: “The lads generate a soaring, intricate carrier for Mackinder’s vocals, but it’s never forced or heavy-handed. Much like the lyrics’ subject, the work put into this makes it sound effortless, an engaging listen.”

Going on Tour

Absolutely! This is the next logical thing. I think we will receive after April the tour schedules from Van GoGo and see them hopefully in California too. Ideally, they are looking for venues holding an audience of 400 people. And for bands I find outdoors is ideal, because there is no echo from concrete walls, you get pure sound. Wait a minute, within walking distance I have here in Playa Vista The Central Park. That is ideal and at about $85/hour one can invest in this location with enough lead time.

Leaves only to say – I hope next year around the same time I will not only have seen the band but also hear of

10,000,000 Streams ….. or more

The full Interview

For those interested in the full interview, here it is:

All Photos from the Band:
Thanks to Chyrisse Tabone

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