The Music Industry at War with Recording Artists
Musicians are angry with record labels because of music streaming. Artists feel that the royalties they receive from record labels such as Universal and Warner are too small. The use of services, such as Spotify, means that consumers no longer purchase albums, instead music is streamed.
Spotify and music streaming accounts for 70.5% of all revenues from recorded music but as Artists only receive approximately 0.05p per stream, they feel that they are losing out and that they are suffering due to their labels. In contrast the companies receive approximately 90%. Artists proclaim that the share of money generated from streaming should be 50/50 but they are not the only ones complaining. Songwriters also feel they are missing out on their fair dues.
Fans of Spotify insist that Artists are able to choose if they wish their music to be distributed by Spotify, unlike other online media such as YouTube where Artists do not have so much control over their work. Spotify has certainly rejuvenated the music world and made niche music much more accessible to the listeners. In fact even prior to services such as Spotify, CD sales were down.
The argument for and against Artist royalties for streamed music has particularly hit Swedish musicians. The Swedish Musician’s Union has taken a strong stand on the issue. Spotify was launched in Sweden in 2008.
DJ’s are also losing popularity with recording artists for a variety of reasons. Irish music Artists are complaining that airplay is decreasing and that new Irish talent is not getting played on the radio It has been estimated that airplay of Irish Artists has fallen from 35% to less than 7%. It is considered that this is due to DJ’s being forced to play only commercial playlists. Although well-known established Irish acts still get airplay, it is very hard for new Irish artists to get a foothold in the door.
This has the result that people do not hear the new bands and prevents diversification of music and new talent is going to the wayside. Approximately 94% of Irish radio royalties was lost to UK and USA record companies.