Miami Rapper Rick Ross’ ringtone is now a blingtone
Ross received a plaque bearing a golden cell phone
Wednesday when music industry officials honored
128 songs as the first batch of gold and platinum
ringtones. Just like vinyl, tapes and CDs, the sounds
of ringing cell phones will now translate into awards
for sales of 500,000, 1 million and beyond.
“The ring tones are just another gateway to
connecting with the kids and the fans,” said Ross,
whose award sported a shiny cell phone rather than
the usual gold album. “That’s just the next level.”
Ross, whose first album comes out later this year,
was cited for his best-selling single “Hustlin’.” He was
joined in the ring(tone) of honor by big-name acts
like the Black Eyed Peas, Beyonce, 50 Cent, Kanye
West and others.
In all, 84 acts were cited as gold winners, 40
platinum and four as multiplatinum by the Recording
Industry Association of America (RIAA). The awards
are given based on downloads of the ringtones.
“Just a few short years ago, it was unthinkable for
sales on ringtones to go platinum,” said RIAA
Chairman Mitch Bainwol. “But here we are. We’re
transforming the way we hear our music.”
According to industry experts, about 10 percent of
music industry revenues worldwide now come from
Ross said when he goes into the studio in the future,
the idea of making a popular ringtone will definitely
be a part of the process.
“You want to do a record so catchy that everybody
wants to go out and get it as a ringtone,” said
The gold and platinum certification came under the
title of “Master Ringtone,” signifying that they were
created from the original masters of the songs. The
ringtones are sometimes a synthesized instrumental
version rather than the artist’s recording.