YET ANOTHER REASON TO DETEST THE BBC?(AND WHY THEY HAVE BEEN CAUGHT WITH THEIR PANTS DOWN.....AGAIN!)
PROMOTING GENDER EQUALITY EXCEPT THEY DON’T
There was only one option left. Another plan B. Jump into bed with said nemesis and hope they did not understand the difference between gross and net.
THE GATEKEEPERS THEY ARE A CHANGING
Having been asleep as the first wave of the digital economy all but washed away their profit centre, the major labels, as anyone interested enough to look will see, all now have significant shares in streaming services. Not only have they got their fingers in that particular pie, they have rammed their collective fists into it.
In the past, in order to exploit the sales potential of the tracks they owned, the majors needed to ensure radio play. Radio was the gatekeeper, Radio was the piper and he who paid the piper (by an intermediary called a plugger) called the tune, or, as the major labels referred to them, units. The bigger the labels wallet, the bigger the ‘independent’ pluggers payslip. The bigger the ‘independent pluggers’ payslip, the more lavish the liquid lunch they could provide to wine and dine any producer of any particular show.
Ever wondered why here in the UK the vast majority of the BBC’s daytime music output was music released by the major labels. Well, you now have your answer.
The original gatekeepers, however, are now fumbling for the keys to the musical Kingdom and the reason is very simple. When the phone in your pocket can predict exactly the type of music you enjoy, and can, within a few seconds recommend any new release that matches your choice, why would anyone want to wade through the inane and usually hypocritical drivel of any daytime radio DJ’s (yes we know who you are and how much you earn) in order to feed your thirst for type of music that you want to hear, when you want to hear it.
Virtually the only gatekeeper in town now is the streaming service Spotify.
SPOTIFY BUSINESS MODEL
Probably one of the most important streaming services is Spotify. Spotify has two income streams, namely, income derived from subscription fees from its users that remove ads that pop up every few minutes. The free user has their flow of music interrupted with ads targeted at exactly their tastes and surfing habits. Of course, the business model means that the millions of companies are willing to advertise on Spotify make it economically feasible to offer a ‘free’ option, in return for subjecting those not willing to pay for music to actually pay for it with a much more valuable commodity, their time.
With the money and the marketing expertise that the major labels have injected into the company, Spotify, is now, to a great extent, the way the vast majority of people listen to music. Why own a stack of CD’s or fill your ever expanding disk drives with downloads of your choice in music when, with a click of the button, there is your desired ordered list of 1’s and 0’s ready for you to consume.
The big driver in breaking new music to a previously unaware public, replacing the role of the previous gatekeeper, is that of the Spotify playlist. Finally, you would think there is a level playing field between the major labels and the tiny independents and unsigned artist. No longer is success dependant on how deep your pockets are to enable you to wine and dine the ever expanding waistlines of the all powerful radio producers. If you are still under the illusion that daytime DJ’s have any real power there is really no hope for you, and might we suggest you apply to the X factor next year to make you the star you always dreamed of becoming.
The playing field is now level. All you need is to make music of great quality, with great production value and this will immediately get picked up by Spotify and placed on the appropriate playlist.
You’re ahead of us aren’t you? The playing field is still virtually vertical, in favour of the Spotify paymasters of course i.e. the major labels.
Unsuprisingly the most listend to playlists are those curated by Spotify themselves and the following came to light only a few days ago. Draw what ever conclusion you like from the following.
14 MILLION PLAYS BUT WHO IS SHE?
Recently, on behalf of Amelia Chain, an artist that we are currently working with, we delved, somewhat belatedly, into the world of the Spotify playlist
The music of Amelia Chain can be classified as ‘Modern Classic’ along the same lines as Ludovico Einaudi and Yann Tiersen. On that basis, after a little bit of research, we came upon the Spotify playlist ‘Piano in The Background.’ with nearly half million followers. All good so far. One of the ‘Artists’ on the playlist that sounded similar to Amelia Chain is an artist by the name of Karin Borg. Beautiful music indeed. ‘She’ has nearly one million monthly listeners. and fourteen million plays but we had never heard of ‘her’. We then embarked on an extensive seach to find out who this very gifted Karin was, but, very surprisingly we drew a blank on the usual google and Facebook channels. ‘Karin’ appeared to be the modern day version of the reclusive Audrey Hepburn yet somehow, nealy a million listeners were suffciently aware of her.
Finally we found that the