Why I’ll Never Ever Ever Ever…buy music again

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Oh Taylor Swift. Lots of people are talking about her. She has a great publicist. Nice job!

I wish her well and I am glad she is moving lots of product. She is a winner and is making lots of money. Congratulations.

I won’t be one of the people buying her product. In fact, I will “never, ever ever” buy a Taylor Swift song/album. I won’t even buy a new Stevie Wonder or Prince song/album, even though I love them. Never. I DO love her new song. It’s great. Just for the record, I am done buying music. In my life, I have purchased well over 2500 CDs, 800 cassettes, 1500 LPs and dozens of mp3s.  There isn’t anything new that I would want to own anyway. Renting music legally from Spotify is just fine with this old man. I have, in my possession, just about all of the greatest music ever made…right here on my hard drive ripped from my music collection. This collection was created through decades of actually purchasing product from record stores. Does anyone remember those places?

If someone wants to shut down streaming services, I feel they are one of the many people fighting the wrong fight. I feel the record labels are the ones who are not paying the artists. The labels are the ones who work with services like Spotify. The labels have been the ones who have ripped off artists since day one. It seems as if the artists are the ones who are stupid enough to do whatever t took to be “famous” including singing away all kinds of rights for that sweet Cadillac.

So, go ahead and applaud Taylor. She has the leverage to not have her product distributed through Spotify. Streaming is an option, not a necessity.

Question; how will a band who just recorded their new album right out of their garage get a person like yourself to hear and buy their ‘product?” Spotify is just one of many distribution networks. It is an option. Not the devil.

I found an interesting article about her on CNN:

Technology is transforming the way music is created, shared and enjoyed, and where we will go from here is hard to predict. The latest shock to the system is Taylor Swift’s decision to break up with Spotify, the popular music streaming service that has 40 million active users — one quarter of which are paying subscribers.

With the release of her latest album, entitled “1989,” Swift — arguably music’s most popular artist at the moment — requested that all her back catalog be removed from the service. The move, which would be risky for most other artists, helped boost sales of the album to 1.3 million units in its debut week, the best performance in the industry since 2002. With no legal option other than buying, fans obliged.

Spotify says that over 70% of its revenues go to artists, but just between $0.006 and $0.0084 is paid for each play, depending on the artist. Others before Swift have pulled out: Thom Yorke famously described the service as “the last desperate fart of a dying corpse,” and his solo works are not available for streaming. Other no-shows include The Beatles, who have an exclusive deal with Apple.

And yet, Spotify is now earning some artists more money than iTunes in Europe, as was revealed at the Web Summit technology conference in Dublin by Willard Ahdritz, CEO and founder of Kobalt, a company that represents thousands of musicians. That means that streaming is becoming, in some instances, more profitable than album sales.

Predicting the hits

Elsewhere in the digital world, social media is becoming a dominant contributing factor to the popularity of an artist, and it’s also generating a huge amount of data that can be a powerful tool for trend analysis. Public social data is like a crystal ball that can help the music industry predict who’s going to become the next big thing.

A company called Next Big Sound specializes in precisely these types of predictions. By tracking streams and collecting data from the Internet — new Twitter followers, Facebook likes and Wikipedia page views — the company says it can estimate the likelihood of an artist making it into the Billboard Top 200, which charts album releases, over a year before it happens.

Making the charts is not easy. Speaking at the Web Summit, Alex White of Next Big Sound pointed out that in the last year, only 961 artists made the Billboard Top 200, and just 204 of those were entering it for the first time. The Billboard Top 100, which tracks singles rather than albums, is an even more exclusive club: out of 249 artists appearing, just 43 were debuting.

Despite the charts favoring established artists, it’s never been so easy to make, share and discover new music. “At the end of the 90s you needed a full blown musical studio to make real music,” said Eric Wahlforss, co-founder of streaming service Soundcloud, “now all you need is a laptop. Even an iPad can be enough. Music making is for everyone. Technology has made it cheaper, accessible and more powerful.”

Read more HERE

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