LISTEN BLOG 310520
Spotify, why do you get all the love in the world?
How To Make Money On Musicians In 2020
In 2018, Spotify was worth 25 Billion Dollars, a number you and I will probably only see in this type of science fiction like report.
In 2019, their gross profit goes from 1.4 to 1.7 billion dollars (source Bussiness of Apps and Statista).
Now ok, I get it. Running that type of structure is far from being an easy task, and the number of artists that Spotify counts in their playlists (i'm feeling nauseous just to say the word now) makes this profit look fairly small if you divide it equally to every individual : if divide this number by the number of artists, everyone of them would end up with 1500$ for a year, considering we're listening to every artist equally (will never happen).
Seen from this perspective, as I saw it myself back in 2012 when I started using it with a free account, it looks quite fair and super handy. You get to listen to the latest albums from your favorite hard working artists and they get paid by the annoying advertisement which you have the pleasure to be served. Fair enough! I myself wish I can get to the point where conscious, musically oriented ads can pay for the costs of my NPO to be honest.
The one point which is making the shift here, is when you look at the salary of the people behind Spotify. As far as I can imagine both financial and physical investment behind holding together such an empire, I simply cannot agree with the idea of someone at the head of a company promoting music making over 1 million dollars in a year, when some of our favorite artists out there can barely pay their rent. It simply cannot cross the border agent of the acceptable in my mind.
Considering this, I also understand how all this works in real life as we live in a world of constant competition. We compete one with each other, walking along with our weaknesses and strengths in our backpacks, climbing up the mountain of success each of us at our own pace, each of us with our own tools. Some better than others, some slower than others, and in order to succeed one can certainly not rely exclusively on kindness of other people doing better than them. One has to be committed to its own success up to the point One will devote himself to put upfront its strength, as much as to work its weaknesses. Meaning if you are an artist and cannot pay for your rent, the responsibility is equally divided between you, how you deal with the obstacles in front of you, and the others responsibility not to completely crush you down to powder (and the unfairness of people knowing people, let's be honest). WE have to be responsible for ourselves before anything. "The Lord helps those who help themselves" (to mention an old twisted book of wisdom genuinely transformed to the taste of the worst gang of criminals the world has ever seen or "Fortune Favors the Brave" if you prefer). The entire animal kingdom obeys to those unfortunate archaic rules.
Now my question is are we still, after thousands of years of civilization, down to this primitive sort of human behavior, or have we progressed a little and applied a few rules according to what works and what doesn't? Not quite sure yet.
...and Why is Spotify Bad for Music Industry?
Nobody, or very few people like to dig for hours to find music, unless they get some sort of reward for it (social value, importance for other people), or simply have learned to enjoy the process. I myself have been educated to that at very young age with seeing my father dig Flamenco cassettes on the markets for ages, or my sister look for the hottest hip hop imported from the states in the only record store of a nearby city, way before the tsunami of internet made everything accessible at our fingertips.
Let's admit this : with the ease and accessibility of everything, with the delivery to our door of goods we'd have to drive two hours to get, we made human beings weak in terms of research abilities. All of us, all Human beings from the most intelligent and kind, down to the most horrible person in the world suffer from that, one way or another. iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Deliveroo, Ubereats, Napster, even Discogs, and promo pools, made us all partially not want to put in the effort needed to get out of our house, in order to the pleasurable reward it is to discover new music.
Therefore, when you can propose to people already curated playlists by famous instagram influencers who have no sort of real love for music whatsoever, or the one from a woman or man lost in the middle of northern Norway who desperately wants to share her/his passion for traditional west african music, most people will go for the big boobs infulencer from the pictured app rather than the music we'd need to actually sit down to listen to and analyze. Like in everything in life, humans want THE HIT. The Adrenaline shot they get with an instanteneous velocity of built up and calculated pleasure, and for more than anything else, Spotify is guilty here, like many bloggers are guilty for doing what works, like the radio is guilty for serving us those who pay the most, like the major record companies are guilty for what they turned popular music into.
So please, do me a favor : keep your curated playlists, your instagram models, and other types of Spotify meme songs away from me, i'm married to another music platform.
I am now almost 100% devoted to a website who's spectrum covers the entire musical variety the world has to offer. I am fully investing every Euro, Dollar, Swiss Franc into a website who REALLY pays its hard working artists (appart from the records I buy in stores)
How can we prevent suffering from the Spotify disease?
Doctors agree that a prescription of Bandcamp three times a day through the ears, with headphones or speakers can prevent the Spotify disease from spreading around the world, or at least save the last resistant human being who's brain haven't turned to yogurt yet.
It is the only way to consciously listen and buy music nowadays, appart from buying records straight out of the show or in a record store.
One thing is missing from there though : the ability to create a playlist, which I'm desperately trying to do here in this blog. Of course you don't wanna be listening to the same artist over and over again sometimes (I did that with Nine Inch Nails - With Teeth look at what it did to me), and of course you'd want to have the possibility to build your own specific lists to dust off the shelves, study, dance in the living room or get more serious about the conception of a mini version of yourself with your partner (please avoid Barry White for that for fuck's sake).
And why not, get specific selection by REAL music lunatics spending their days and nights digging?
Wouldn't that help supporting our favorite dedicated souls sell more of their work?
Isn't that one of the million reasons why you still buy music (if you do)?
For that matter here, we need more power, more souls involved, more internet pressure or maybe more dedicated people working for Bandcamp.
I myself dedicate this blog to Bandcamp playlists for that matter.
I decide to dedicate my selection of music on this Feel blog, to people who's work really matter to my heart, to musicians and entrepreneur working hand in hand together for a fair world in music, and not to put more millionaires upfront in the crates.
I engage fully into this for you to see there is a world outside of spotify, especially for House Music, Techno, Ambient, Dub, Jazz and Experimental Music.
Where do YOU buy your digital Music (if you do)?
I'd love to know if more souls are standing against the Giant.
More about the Bandcamp playlist topic?
You should like this article from Opus too