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How Streaming Is Killing Indie Labels And Their Musicians

streaming kills the rock and roll star

How is it possible the major labels allowed “Spotify” into their business? Easy. “Spotify” cut em in. The result of that was “Spotify got their hands on the majors back catalogs. So far so dog bites man, right? But then there is this:all the major independent labels has distribution deals with the major labels. For instance, Saddle Creek is distributed by WB.

Now look at what this means in real terms.

The major labels are getting money as owners from Spotify but still a pittance in cost per stream, which they then take a cut off and then forward to the major labels. But the indies are indies because they make all artistic decisions, they get to choose who to record and how to record and publicize them. This worked fine in the 1990s, the majors got the product on the market place and the indies retained their integrity.

But the huge distribution streams of the majors isn’t going to get the indies more money off the  streaming services. The majors are already getting their bread as part owners but the indies are only getting pennies per stream and the musicians are going backrupt. But what can the indies do?

They have contracts with the majors they can’t break and even if they could, even if Sub Pop went it alone, how would that help? They simply aren’t big enough. So then what? So then musicians can’t make any money and leave the business.

What’s to be done?

The indies need to organize themselves into one voice and pull their music off all streaming services till their music can be renegotiated. They need to drop their major label distribution deals and start together as one voice. Even start their own streaming service for indie labels.

They need to do something better than complain about Spotify. Organize, unify, reboot.

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