Anthony Fantano: The Internet Busiest Music Nerd

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Written By Drew Gomez






Anthony Fantano is a popular music critic and internet personality who runs The Needle Drop, a YouTube channel where he reviews music from various genres and styles. He also has a secondary channel, fantano, where he talks about music news, interviews artists, and discusses other topics related to music and culture. He is known for his passionate, honest, and sometimes controversial opinions on music, as well as his humorous and quirky persona.


Fantano lives in Connecticut, where he works from his home studio. He is married to Dominique Boxley, who occasionally appears in his videos. He is a vegan and an animal rights activist, and has collaborated with PETA on several campaigns. He is also a fan of comic books, video games, and movies, and often references them in his reviews. He has a large and loyal fan base, who call themselves “Melonheads” or “Needle Drops”. He interacts with his fans through social media, livestreams, Q&A sessions, and live shows.


Fantano was born on October 28, 1985, in Wolcott, Connecticut. He is of Sicilian descent, and his father was a professional power lifter. He became interested in music and politics at a young age, influenced by the punk rock singer Jello Biafra, whom he considers his political idol. He started playing guitar and bass in high school, and joined several bands. He also developed a taste for hip hop, metal, indie, and experimental music.


Fantano graduated from Southern Connecticut State University in 2008, with a degree in liberal studies. He was a music director for the college radio station, where he hosted The Needle Drop, a show that featured music reviews and interviews. He also worked at Connecticut Public Radio (WNPR), where he continued to host The Needle Drop until 2014. He launched his YouTube channel in 2009, and decided to pursue it full-time in 2011, after gaining popularity and recognition online.


Fantano has achieved many milestones and accolades as a music critic and internet personality. Some of his notable achievements are:

  • He won the “Beyond the Blog” award at the MTV O Music Awards in 2011, beating out other music bloggers and websites
  • He reached one million subscribers on his YouTube channel in 2017, and currently has over 2.8 million subscribers and over 990 million views
  • He has interviewed many famous and influential musicians, such as Tyler, the Creator, Hopsin, Death Grips, Logic, Brockhampton, and Lil Nas X
  • He has been featured in various media outlets, such as The Guardian, Spin, Forbes, The Fader, and Kotaku
  • He has performed live shows and Q&A sessions at various venues and universities, such as Cornell University, New York University, and the University of California, Berkeley.


Fantano has also faced some challenges and controversies in his career as a music critic and internet personality. Some of the challenges he has encountered are:

  • He has received criticism and backlash from some fans and artists for his negative or mixed reviews of their music, such as Kanye West, Drake, Logic, and Chance the Rapper.
  • He has been accused of promoting alt-right sentiments and racism in some of his videos on his secondary channel, “thatistheplan”, which he later deleted. He denied the allegations and defended himself in a video titled “Response”.
  • He has been sued by Activision Blizzard for allegedly charging for a TikTok video that used a clip from their game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. He claimed that he was unaware of the lawsuit and that he did not charge for the video.


Anthony Fantano is one of the most influential and respected music critics of the internet era. He has reviewed thousands of albums and songs, covering a wide range of genres and artists.

He has also created a unique and entertaining online persona, that appeals to millions of music fans around the world. He is not afraid to express his opinions, even if they are unpopular or controversial. He is a passionate, honest, and knowledgeable music nerd, who loves to share his love of music with others. He is, indeed, the internet’s busiest music nerd.

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