The VMAs may have taken a ratings hit, but they still deliver a bump on Spotify. After Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj’s workout-filled performance of their new single “Side To Side”, the track jumped 355% from the weekend prior. Kanye West’s “Fade”, whose video he premiered during the show, jumped 324%. Michael Phelps’s Olympic pump-up song “Stick That”, from Future, jumped 75%.
Spotify is ready to allow new releases to be windowed on its paid Premium service. The music streamer needs new contracts with the major labels before it can move forward with an IPO; and reversing its long and strong anti-windowing policy has reportedly become part of the negotiations, according to a new report.
Amazon is so close to finishing its deal with the major labels that it will launch a competitor to Spotify and Apple Music in September, sources tell the Financial Times. Previous reports have Amazon adding a lower priced $5 tier available only via its Echo speaker/digital assistant combo.
Although Spotify, like so many streaming companies, blames its lack of substantial profit on its requisite payment of such high royalty rates, the company's woes may in fact stem from a flawed growth strategy and mismanaged finances, as potential investors wait for an IPO which may be a long time coming.
After releasing his heavily anticipated visual album 'Endless' and thereby fulfilling his contractual obligation with Universal, Frank Ocean sent massive shockwaves through the music industry by independently releasing another album, 'Blonde' exclusively on Apple Music, a decision which could predict the future of artist/label relationships, particularly with regard to exclusives.
Spotify now has 39 million paying subscribers, up 9 million from 30 million in March. By comparison, Apple Music announced 15 million in June and TIDAL has about 4 million paying users. The new stats were shared by Spotify's recent high profile hire Troy Carter who also shared the music streamer's plans to offer a "full stack solution" for artists.
Frank Ocean has just shaken up the music industry, probably forever. His dual exclusive releases via Apple on Friday and Saturday ignited a long overdue debate about exclusive streaming releases; and hidden in the details are lessons that should be sending shockwaves through the executive suites at Universal, Sony and WMG.