The ‘S’ Word…

You’ve heard it a gazillion times before; CD’s are out, digital downloading is in. But it appears even digital downloading is getting jacked in as we now have today’s method of listening to music…STREAMING.

To those that don’t know what streaming is, this is where you can subscribe to a site by paying a small fee every month and you can listen to unlimited music. There are plenty of streaming sites and apps such as Apple Music, Rhapsody, Google Play, Deezer, Pandora (U.S. Australian and New Zealand only) and many, many more. Oh and of course there’s the one that I’m currently on…Spotify. Dunno if you’ve heard of it? I mean it’s not that popular really! Anyway, whilst artists do at least now get paid per play on these Satan sites, don’t go putting a deposit down on that Ferrari, mansion or set of new tits just yet since as an unsigned artist you will receive just 0.6 to 0.84 of one cent (approximately half of one penny) per play, less the distributor’s commission of course. Sadly it appears streaming is the way to go these days until the next big thing comes along, but it doesn’t mean I like it. Yes, I’m stubborn.

This is most definitely having an impact on new unsigned artists breaking through in the music industry.

 

Now for some facts and figures. Yes, they may have been copied and pasted as my attention span is slim…but they’re quite interesting:

According to BBC figures, in the first six months of 2016, there were 86 new entries in the UK singles chart, compared with 230 a decade earlier. (Incidentally, Sheeran’s single Thinking Out Loud was the first streaming-abetted No 1.) The Official Charts Company (OCC) underestimated the huge effect the change would have. In 2014, the format accounted for just 41.5% of the overall singles market, at a time when 100 streams were the equivalent of one “sale”. This January, the OCC announced that the figure had almost doubled to 80%, and that it was changing its rules, though not significantly: you now needed 150 streams to count as one unit.

Fair enough, when you’re Ed Sheeran or have a big name like that and your tunes are being streamed millions of times, then yes you may earn a bob or two and yes your face might get some free advertising on the front page of the site. However, when you’re a nobody like me trying to break through and get your music out there to establish core fans that will buy your next EP or album to fund the next one, and you can just about get around 26 Spotify followers (most of them being friends/family and the rest, let’s be real, don’t really give a shit), chances are you’re not gonna gain much from streaming. After all, why would core fans buy your digital downloadable EP or physical CD for a fiver when they can listen to it and unlimited other artists for twice that cost per month?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not just in this for the money. But it really is true that there’s just no money in album sales anymore. I’ve always said if you want to be rich and famous then don’t be a musician, I’m sure there are simpler ways of hitting the jackpot. Unfortunately people, ‘money makes the world go around’ – init. So much hard-work, patience and creativity goes into making music (not to mention the blood, sweat and tears). When you hear a song on the radio you really don’t realise how much time and effort has gone into that 3 minute track, and everybody who has been involved in making that record should be paid what they deserve. As an unknown and unsigned artist you want to make a bit of money in order to make more music, which is near impossible thanks to streaming sites like bloody Spotify.

It’s a tricky one though because as a listener I get it. Unlimited music for a tenner a month – bargain! I love a bargain. I’m guilty of buying a Christian Dior shirt for £4 from a charity shop. Or walking into the shoe department in T.K. Maxx and only looking through the sale section on the bottom shelf. But I know if I want the real thing then I’m gonna have to pay for it. We’re all the same, we’re all a little bit tight and want things for as little money as possible – it’s human nature. So I understand the sinful sites of streaming for that reason. They’re a listener’s best friend, but an unknown artist’s worst enemy.

So with the launch of my new EP ‘EL RECO’ coming up pretty soon (here’s a behind the scenes promo video to the making of ‘EL RECO‘), I’m torn as to whether or not to put it on Spotify. That’s of course if I don’t get banned from all streaming sites after this blog post. Will it help my career or slow it down? That is the question. Decisions, decisions. And we all know I’m indecisive. Maybe one day, if I ever gain a loyal enough following who I know will support my music regardless, then what’s the harm in doing a lil bit of streaming. But right now, whilst I’m a skint ex-barmaid trying to be a singer/songwriter, I’m not so convinced that selling my music short to the devil will be the best way forward, and instead focus on the core people who believe in my tunes and wanna support me and my music. These are the life dilemmas us unsigned artists go through! If there are any unsigned artists reading this who can relate, then take a look at Ari Herstand’s Blog “11 Things Millennial Musicians Just Don’t Get”. He has some great advice for us nobodies!

6 Comments

  • bill says:

    What have you done today to make you feel proud!

  • AlamiQQ.com says:

    For most recent information you have to pay a quick visit web and
    on the web I found this web page as a finest website
    for latest updates.

  • Research shows a relationship between the number of folks
    followed and the quantity of followers. Optimize your Twitter bio.

    Users who want to learn more about who you are will inevitably visit your Tweets bio.
    Make sure it can professional, complete and that it will a great job of representing both you and your business.
    buy twitter followers. Sites like sociaboost. contendo provide real looking supporters and having more will make people follow you.

  • Tammy Fellows says:

    Hi Georgia,

    Interesting points you bring up in this post! I’m not a huge user of streaming sites myself (okay, Pandora sometimes),but then I’m an old fashioned baby boomer who still prefers to have her chosen musical selections available on-demand stored on my various devices. Pandora I like just because it has enabled me to find music I may not have heard before, by their process of suggesting similar artists to the ones I already follow. If I like an artist or song I’ve discovered in Pandora, I usually do buy it from the links provided therein. Don’t know much about Spotify or how it works. In your case, I imagine you must enjoy having a wide age range amongst your fan base, due to the universal appeal of your work! I hope enough old-school people like me will continue to actually purchase your songs, and support your blossoming career. You’re gonna be huge, Georgia. 😎 Anyway, best to you as always…I have pre-ordered El Reco on iTunes, and can’t wait for it to be available!

    Xo
    Tammy

    • Georgia says:

      Hey there Tammy.

      Thank you for sharing your views on ‘Pandora’. ‘The Girl – EP’ was added to Pandora’s playlist earlier this year even though we can’t actually get Pandora in the U.K. yet as it’s limited to the U.S. Australia and New Zealand. As I understand, it’s more of an internet radio station, and a little more restrictive on the user being able to choose what they want to play. Pandora’s been around since 2000 I believe. With around 81m listeners, historically, Pandora outperformed Spotify. However, I think Spotify has exceeded that recently and is definitely probably the biggest single streaming threat to an unsigned artist’s earning power. Here’s an interesting comparison article I found on-line. http://www.diffen.com/difference/Pandora_vs_Spotify

      Vinyl is making a huge comeback though. Newbie’s like me love the sound quality of vinyl and the youth are re-discovering it saying’ “Why did you get rid of Vinyl when the sound quality is so much better than digital?” Convenience I guess, but convenience to the consumer comes at a price and it’s usually to the artist or label or both. Before I embarked on this career I was probably the worlds worst for album sharing, not really thinking of the consequences….

      As such, to sign with a label nowadays is ridiculously hard. They certainly give you the exposure a new artist needs. But I’m not holding out for that to happen! Label’s want all the hard work done for them, a fan base in place and an album ready to run. That’s primarily down to the reduction in album sales (due to the advent of licensed streaming) and touring as the most lucrative mode of income to the artist. I’ll be in my 30’s by that stage! No, I’m just concentrating on building a true fan following (not fake Facebook likes or Youtube views) that like my music and my story and will buy an album as those core fan sales fund the next album and the next etc, etc. I love performing to a lively crowd and I’d be more than happy to be in a position to book a venue, advertise the event and fill it with 100 guaranteed fans of my music. That brings me round seamlessly to thanking you for pre-ordering the new EP!

      I have some top secret news that I’ll be sharing with subscribers to my blog, like you Tammy. It involves another pre-album EP (the 3rd and final pre-album EP) and a multi-instrumentalist who started his career in The Ray Charles Band, was with Earth Wind & Fire for around 8 years, who’s recently toured with “The Jacksons” and was Bette Midler’s musical director during her UK tour at The O2!

      Stay tuned and big thanks to you and Captain Brilliant being true fans 🙂

      Georgia xx

Trackbacks and Pingbacks

Trackback URL for this post:

http://www.georgiasmusic.com/streaming/trackback/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,