Spotify and Taylor Swift may no longer be together, but newly released financial data should help the streaming service’s owners to cope with the break up.
Tag: Spotify (1-10 of 53)
From the surprise release of her self-titled album just before the year started through her On the Run Tour to the various zeitgeist-shattering videos, remixes, and awards show ceremonies (not to mention a notorious example of shit going down in an elevator), pantsless superhero Beyonce has had 2014 steady on lock. Just to make sure we somehow don’t forget about her and her flawless (pretty much) album between now and Dec. 31, she’s about to release a “platinum edition” of it that includes a couple new tracks and a few remixes, plus a DVD, photo books, and a 2015 calendar (because she apparently plans on owning 2015 as well). It doesn’t come out until next Monday, but the new tracks–including the Nicki Minaj-enhanced “Flawless” remix and a “Drunk in Love” remix with Kanye–are already on Spotify. Get to streaming.
Taylor Swift’s latest high-profile breakup was a change from the usual, being a global music streaming service rather than a tousle-haired pop star. Two weeks ago she pulled her music from Spotify, inspiring industry pundits to debate the sustainability of a platform that can’t hold onto its market’s biggest star of the moment and Spotify to make a very public plea for her to return.
The stated cause of the split was money, and specifically the relatively tiny amount of royalties that artists receive from Spotify plays versus other forms of media, a subject that’s irked other major pop stars like Radiohead’s Thom Yorke. In order to get some perspective on the situation, Time recently tabulated a list of the most-played artists on the service and did the math based off Spotify’s stated pay-out rates to estimate what sort of sums are in the balance. While it seems like Swift may be turning down more money per month than most people make in a lifetime, her people say she’s actually been paid considerably less.
Check out T-Swift’s numbers (and the rest of the top 20 most-played artists on Spotify) here.
Taylor Swift and Spotify might be broken up, but the music streaming service has already moved on—to Uber.
Spotify and Uber partnered together so riders can decide what music’s on the stereo when they get in their Uber. All they have to do is connect to their Spotify account in the Uber app and then choose a song to queue up while they’re waiting; once they get in the car, the chosen song will start playing.
READ FULL STORY
Yesterday, YouTube announced that it’s going to get into the highly competitive music streaming business. According to the L.A. Times, the Google-owned video service is getting ready to roll out YouTube Music Key, which will “give users access to tens of millions of songs, for about $10 a month”— by providing an ad-free way to enjoy all the music that’s currently licensed and available on the service.
Okay, great. Should you care?
Taylor Swift’s 1989 dropped Oct. 27. Just a week later, all her music disappeared from Spotify.
This caused some confusion among fans—and caused Spotify to panic. Since Nov. 3, the two parties have gone back and forth about the whys behind Swift’s move. Swift says she believes art should have value, and she doesn’t think Spotify conveys this message; Spotify maintains that its goal from the beginning has been to help fans listen to music while also giving artists their due.
It’s messy, and, as Swift said in a Time interview, “really kind of an old story”—she first publicized her views about paying for music this past summer. But since her decision to yank her songs from the site made that story new again, here’s a complete rundown of who’s said what so far.
While some artists could pull their catalogs from Spotify without a ton of backlash, when Taylor Swift did it upon the release of her immensely successful 1989, the streaming service responded with a “please take me back” letter that, in Swift talk, was somewhere between “Back to December” and “Mean.”
But that plea didn’t seem to work on Taylor. In a new interview with Yahoo, the singer defended her decision to pull her music from the streaming service, saying she’s not keen on the idea of doling out art for free.
“If I had streamed the new album, it’s impossible to try to speculate what would have happened. But all I can say is that music is changing so quickly, and the landscape of the music industry itself is changing so quickly, that everything new, like Spotify, all feels to me a bit like a grand experiment,” she said. “And I’m not wiling to contribute my life’s work to an experiment that I don’t feel fairly compensates the writers, producers, artists, and creators of this music.”
Swift expressed similar sentiments in a lengthy Wall Street Journal op-ed earlier this year. In that piece, she emphasized that music, as art, is valuable, and that “valuable things should be paid for.”
“And I just don’t agree with perpetuating the perception that music has no value and should be free,” she told Yahoo. “A lot of people were suggesting to me that I try putting new music on Spotify with “Shake It Off,” and so I was open-minded about it. I thought, ‘I will try this; I’ll see how it feels.’ It didn’t feel right to me. I felt like I was saying to my fans, ‘If you create music someday, if you create a painting someday, someone can just walk into a museum, take it off the wall, rip off a corner off it, and it’s theirs now and they don’t have to pay for it.’ I didn’t like the perception that it was putting forth. And so I decided to change the way I was doing things.”
Sounds like Spotify’s going to have to step up their apology game if they want Tay back. Perhaps an album in her name?
Once upon a time, Taylor Swift fans who didn’t want to shell out dozens of dollars could listen to most of Swift’s discography on Spotify for free. That time is now over—but Spotify is trying to change that.
Swift removed all her music from Spotify, so the company responded by posting a note to the “Shake It Off” singer on their website. “We hope she’ll change her mind and join us in building a new music economy that works for everyone,” their site reads, and adds that they pay “nearly 70 percent of [their] revenue back to the music community.” READ FULL STORY
There’s plenty of kid-friendly Halloween-themed music out there, but sometimes you’re in the mood for songs that’ll actually give you the chills. (No offense intended, “Monster Mash” and “A Nightmare on My Street.”)
When you’re ready to take your party from turnt-up to terrifying, try this playlist of creepy tunes. They range from songs about serial killers (Neko Case’s “Deep Red Bells” concerns the Green River Killer, while “John Wayne Gacy” memorializes America’s preeminent nightmare-inducing clown) to traditional Appalachian murder ballads (“Down in the Willow Garden,” a folk song that dates back to the 19th century, is covered here by Green Day’s frontman and the eternally mellow Norah Jones). This is the perfect soundtrack for a goth gathering or a Halloween night at home alone, while you check—and double-check—to make sure your doors are locked. READ FULL STORY
UPDATE: An Apple representative told Recode the TechCrunch report was “not true” but would not elaborate further. Recode also was told by Apple that Beats may go away but that the company would remain invested in music streaming, which would still fall in line with part of TechCrunch‘s earlier report.
ORIGINAL STORY: Apple announced its acquisition of Beats Music and Beats Electronics only five months ago, but a new report suggests that one portion of that purchase may soon be closing its doors.
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