Why Nico Franc's "Stuck" Is One of the Best Pop Songs of The Year
A one-of-one collectible of "Stuck" is available now
Nico Franc’s wonderous “Stuck” gives me goose bumps every time. There’s something about the finely-tuned bittersweet sentiment of the song that instantly connects. Experiencing the task of weeding through tons of new music every week for years, I’ve developed a fine sense of what works and what doesn’t. “Stuck” is one of those songs that immediately stands out from the pack for its quality and authenticity. It’s a perfectly-crafted pop song filled with little details, twists, and turns that keep on giving no matter how many times I’ve already played the song.
I remember hearing “Stuck” for the first time when Franc performed it at the wavWRLD party at NFT.NYC as a special guest during Peter Saputo’s set. That brief acoustic moment in New York made it clear that Franc is a gifted performer who knows how to turn a great pop song into an audience anthem. Lucky for everyone, “Stuck” is available on a streaming platform near you now. Plus, if you really love it, you can own the song as a digital collectible. “Stuck” was first released as a one-of-one Music NFT on Zora.
I’ve written before that I love to scour the web to find great new music. I always look for that diamond in the rough that has the power to cut through. I dig for songs that break through the noise and shine in total clarity. “Stuck” is one of those rare finds that has pure, unbridled hit potential. It taps into a universal sentiment that people everywhere can instantly relate to. It’s not about the individual melody, lyrics, or performance per se—it’s about the feeling those three create together. (Not to mention clever use of an electronic guitar, the build towards the end of the song, the pitch-perfect harmonies, and a surprising final second.)
Written by Franc and co-produced by Franc, Dean Woodson, and legendary hitmaker Rob Cavallo, “Stuck” is about leaning in while letting go of love. Franc sings, “So I wrote you a text that I knew I'd regret/But you liked it/Said it might've just made your year/And it's only February.” “Stuck” is a story about things in life that are seemingly just impossible to say goodbye to.
If you’re a fan of “Stuck,” make sure to also check out “Paint In The Dark,” a song that Franc released earlier late last year and minted on Zora as well as his genesis NFT. It’s equally sublime.
With co-signs of artists like Peter Saputo and Dylan Dunlap, I had to find a moment to get to know Nico Franc and learn more about the terrific songs he has been putting out, along with learning more about his experience tip-toeing into the world of Web3 and Music NFTs.
Arjan: I’m loving “Stuck” so much, and I’m looking forward to getting to know you better. Who is Nico Franc? How did you end up making music?
Nico: Before moving to Los Angeles to pursue music full-time, I was at the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia studying industrial design. I had a love for music as well and pursued that on the side. I spent my weekends booking shows and playing music. My sister lives out here in L.A. and I came to visit a few times. I loved it and I decided to move here to focus on music full-time. I just started out here busking and street performing. During the pandemic, I really focused on songwriting and becoming a better producer.
At what point did you know music was special to you?
I was a very shy kid but but always very drawn to music. I think music was my ability to communicate how I felt. My dad's a drummer, and we have a lot of musicians in the family. I started playing the piano and composing as a child. I’ve always felt the most comfortable playing music.
After moving to Los Angeles, what has your journey been like?
My focus has been on touring and playing shows. I’ve booked five national tours and played hundreds of shows. I’ve been on stage a lot, and I love doing live music. It has been important for me to develop that as a platform first.
With the focus primarily on touring and playing live, have you also released music?
I’ve only released a few songs so far. I’ve been learning a lot about songwriting and production with the guidance of Rob [Cavallo]. It’s been wonderful to take songs I’ve been performing live and turn them into a recording. My focus has been on translating the feeling of songs on stage into a cohesive production.
I find it very refreshing that you favor live shows over putting out music often to give yourself time to learn and grow as a songwriter and producer.
I love doing live shows and creating spaces where we can all sing something silly together. To me, the joy of music is when it's shared. I put myself in circumstances where I have the ability to curate those moments myself. I live for that. The songs I’ve released so far have been songs I’ve played live for a while, including “Stuck.”
Tell us more about “Stuck.” I’m such a fan of the song.
It’s a song about my ex-girlfriend. We met in 2018 and the circumstances didn’t work out for us. She was living in another country. We were together one night, and we had a drink, and when I got home that evening, I started writing the song. She ended up moving to another country, and I went on tour for a few months and we were just pen pals. I remember sitting in a coffee shop in Chicago at one point and I had this very visual explanation of this emotion that I had and the song just flowed out. I was on tour and started playing it right away and it really resonated with people. It kept tweaking it. It took a few months for all the pieces to come together.
You first released “Stuck” as a Music NFT a few days before its release on streaming platforms. Why did you decide to do that and jump into Web3?
Peter [Saputo] has been doing a lot in the space and he has been an unbelievable inspiration. Daniel Allen has been as well. He’s such a pioneer. My brother-in-law is in the tech world and we talked about it, and I’ve been studying and exploring it. I feel Music NFTs are like fan merch except that they are tied to the blockchain. It’s cool to release music this way, but I’m mostly excited about building a different kind of relationship with fans. Peter and I were up late one night after going out at NFT.NYC, and it was a spontaneous move to put up “Stuck” and just see what would happen.
Can you talk more about building relationships with fans using Music NFTs?
A good way to explain is to talk about the Grateful Dead. They are one of my favorite bands. Their live shows are incredible, and their shows are never the same. There’s always a different setlist. The moments are always different. But the fans that went to the same show have a special bond together because they experienced something unique together. There’s instant camaraderie. The blockchain feels a little like that. You have proof that you are part of a group of fans that experience an NFT together. It’s really about community and the people you are connected with. It’s still early days, and there’s a barrier to participate, but I’m excited for the future.
What are your plans for the rest of the year?
There will be more music, and I’m figuring out my next live shows.