Home Uncategorized Jay Z Relaunches TIDAL: True Artist Avengers or Just A Millionaire Musicians Club?

Jay Z Relaunches TIDAL: True Artist Avengers or Just A Millionaire Musicians Club?



Yesterday Jay Z relaunched
TIDAL as the first artist owned
streaming music service
. But the question everyone is
asking today is: Will TIDAL become the first bona fide
threat to Spotify’s ascension
or did we just witness
some particularly well orchestrated


On paper, TIDAL looks impressive.  Who wouldn’t
want their music service controlled by musicians rather than
self-serving record labels and profit-driven venture

And think of all of the exclusive content.  TIDAL
co-owners Kanye West, Madonna, Nicki
Minaj. Beyonce, Jack White, Alicia Keys, Rihanna,
Chris Martin of Coldplay, Usher, Daft
Punk, deadmau5, J Cole, Jason Aldean, Calvin Harris
and Jay Z all delivering music and videos that fans can’t find
anywhere else!

While yesterday’s launch event was long on star
power, it was short on details.  But what we have learned
– from yesterday’s launch, media interviews, off the record
from industry insiders and after looking around the relaunched
service – is that so far at least, TIDAL has some work to do
before its lives up to yesterdays ‘artist’s revolution’ hype.

Mission: To Reestablish The Value Of

TIDAL’s “mission to reestablish the value of music and protect
the sustainability of the music industry rooted in creativity
and expression,” according to the “Declaration” signed yesterday by the 16
stars dubbed “The Avengers of Music.”  Thus far, however,
the music industry re-write appears to only be
for the superstars who took the stage alongside Jay Z.

Each artist-partner has reportedly received a 3% stake in the
new music service. How or even if TIDAL might be better than
Spotify and other competitors for the tens of thousands of
other working musicians who increasingly rely on streaming
income, remains unanswered.

The appearance that TIDAL will further line the pockets of
already rich superstars led to backlash across the web
overnight. “That whole #TIDALforALL gathering looked like an
announcement for a terrible charity record, with themselves as
the charity,”  tweeted one doubter

Exclusives?  What

As for all of the implied exclusive content, I could find very
little when looking around TIDAL late yesterday and today. And
how much control these artists, most of whom are tied to a
variety of restrictive recording and other contracts,
 have over how and where their content can be released is
a question for the lawyers. 

Also, don’t think for a minute that Apple’s Beats and other
music services are not angling for their own exclusives.
 Apple’s Jimmy Iovine has already been talking to artists
– among TIDAL’s launch partners and beyond – about exclusives
using Apple’s broad reach and deep pockets as weapons.

image from casinohilfe.info
Help The 99%

Higher payments to all artists would be number on on the list,
but given the nature of label contracts seems unlikely.
 But there are other options:

  • Follow Pandora and YouTube’s lead and offer free
  • Go farther than Spotify has gone and integrate
    outside direct to fan services
    like BandsInTown,
    BandPage, Bandcamp, Merchbar, PledgeMusic, Patreon,
    ReverbNation, Songkick and more
  • Allow some form of opt-in direct messaging from
    artist to fans
  • Get serious about artist development – not
    just with the artists that TIDAL partners have signed to their
    vanity labels, but with artists of all genres chosen by
    curators and by fans
  • Be a source of funding for new music and
    ambitious collaborations

Tell us what you think about the new TIDAL below and be
sure to vote here – #TIDALForALL


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