Ismail Salhi of Shares About Making Music Giftable Again

by | Dec 12, 2017 | Uncategorized

Streaming platforms may be convenient, but you can’t give someone the gift of streaming (unless you buy them a gift card).

What was great about CDs and vinyl records (and what’s still great about them), is that you can hold them in your hands.

Per Ismail Salhi of Qleek, this is also what’s great about Qleek. Plus, it doesn’t just replace vinyl records. Its content can be updated remotely by artists to continually engage their fans.

How does it all work? You’re about to find out.

Here’s Ismail to answer my questions about Qleek and what it means for artists everywhere.

1. Tell us about who you are and what you do.

I am Ismail, CEO and co-founder of Qleek. I started the company two years ago with the goal of reinventing the record to make music giftable again.

As much as I love streaming and its convenience, I felt an obvious loss when I stopped buying records. Not because I love the object, but because I couldn’t gift music to my friends as a present. Sharing music is by email or messaging is one thing, but handing a record to someone special is a whole different experience. That’s why I started Qleek.

2. What is Qleek? How does it benefit artists?

Qleek is a connected Mixtape artists sell to their fans during concerts and festivals. It is connected because they can update its content remotely and at any time. We basically created a new music format that fans can play with their phone and that fits the way we play music today.

Artists can not only sell their own recorded music with Qleek. But also playlists, pictures and videos. They can use their Qleeks to announce shows and pre-sell music to their fans.

3. How will Qleek enhance the fan experience? share memorable songs and photosWhen a fan buys a Qleek, he’s not only supporting the artist but also getting curated playlists, unreleased content, and future updates. It is a direct channel between the fan and the artist.

For example, if I buy a CD today after a concert, it’s mainly to support the artist. I don’t even own a CD player, and so I end up owning an object that’s collecting dust in my house. Whereas with Qleek, I get a cool magnet to put on my fridge (Yes, Qleeks are magnetic) but it’s also a way to easily get access to content that I’ll love.

4. What are some unique ways artists can use Qleek to promote their music?

We’ve got artists and record labels using Qleek as a medium to share new music, promos, pre-releases, or even ticket pre-sales with their paying fans. It is a new type of merch in a way that people can play before, during and after a show.

Qleek is a new type of merch fans can engage with before, during, and after the show. Share on X

For instance, one of the record labels we’ve worked with has used Qleek to promote a secret playlist that you cannot access otherwise. The playlists included unreleased songs, classics and even an interview of the artist at the end.

5. Is there anything else I should have asked?

With iOS 11 recently launching, Qleeks will soon be playable using NFC. That means a way simpler experience where a fan just swipes a Qleek on its phone to play the current content of the Qleek.

Final Thoughts

Thanks goes to Ismail Salhi, CEO at for answering my questions. I hope you enjoyed this interview, and you’re already coming up with your own ideas on how you can use Qleek to engage your fans.

If you enjoyed this interview, please take a moment to thank Qleek on Twitter: @Qleek

If you have any questions of your own, please share them in the comments section below.