Fighting For Your Ears

Last week Spotify revealed it’s going to promote podcasts on its streaming service, providing yet another example of the fierce competition underway for your ears.

Indeed, between music services, audiobooks, and podcasts, the fight for listening time is only heating up. When Apple’s multimedia player, iTunes, was released in 2001, competition across these different types of audio was not as evident. When iTunes transformed into a digital multimedia store, this changed.

Originally, however, iTunes was a simple music player and Napster, an unlicensed peer-to-peer file sharing service, which allowed users to send audio files back and forth, was the closest thing to a digital music store. While Napster quickly ran afoul of U.S. copyright law, the overwhelming response to the product demonstrated enormous pent-up demand for a licensed digital audio service. Eventually iTunes emerged as not only a service for purchasing songs and managing files on music devices, but one for listening to music.

Read Article: Fighting For Your Ears

Issue #220: The Power of Playlisting; PledgeMusic Launches Amplify; Deezer Heading to Google Home

 The Power of Playlisting
The Power of Playlistingwww.thembj.org

Before the era of streaming services, Internet radio, and digital downloads, it was essential for artists to utilize a label’s resources in order to mass distribute music.

PledgeMusic Launches Amplify, A New Artist Development Platform
PledgeMusic Launches Amplify, A New Artist Development Platformwww.hypebot.com
PledgeMusic has launched a new artist development program dubbed Amplify. It is accepting submissions from “up and coming creatives” for a chance to receive extra support through Pledge Music’s fan-based platform, as well as be eligible for special sponsorship opportunities.

 Brands and the Future of Music
Brands and the Future of Musicwww.thembj.org

Most brands need to rejuvenate themselves periodically, and this is especially true when their commerce is directed to a younger demographic. Music is a catalyst that brings youth aboard, so its value in product marketing is paramount.

8 Creative Approaches to Promoting Your Music with Playlists
8 Creative Approaches to Promoting Your Music with Playlistsblog.landr.com

Playlists are the most important way we listen to music today. Industry estimates show that 1 in every 5 plays happens in a playlist across all streaming platforms.

'Carpool Karaoke' Apple Music Series: Interview With Producers
'Carpool Karaoke' Apple Music Series: Interview With Producerswww.billboard.com
The 20-episode series that sprung from the ‘The Late Late Show’ segment will feature a surprising mix of A-list actors, musicians and athletes belting out your favorite songs on a weekly basis.

Startup AI Music reveals its plans for ‘shape-changing songs'
Startup AI Music reveals its plans for ‘shape-changing songs'musically.com
In January this year, Music Ally spotted a new artificial-intelligence music startup pop up on investment site Angellist: London-based AI Music.

Pandora sort of bounces back after months of chaos
Pandora sort of bounces back after months of chaostechcrunch.com

Pandora is probably breathing a small sigh of relief after months of chaos have still ended with a positive second quarter.

Music streaming platform KKBOX studied listener habits
Music streaming platform KKBOX studied listener habitswww.bandwagon.asia
Over the years, the global music industry has faced many changes due to the rapid technological changes in the world – from the re-emergence of phy…

With A Fresh Spin On The 808, DJs Become Rhythm Composers
With A Fresh Spin On The 808, DJs Become Rhythm Composerswww.npr.org
It’s the Fender Stratocaster of drum machines. More than three decades after the TR-808 forever changed the sound of popular music, its creators are hoping a DJ-friendly update can make history again.

LiveXLive, Cinedigm Partner for Live Music Events, Original Content
LiveXLive, Cinedigm Partner for Live Music Events, Original Contentplatformandstream.com
LiveXLive and Cinedigm have partnered in a worldwide distribution agreement that will give music fans across the globe access to LiveXLive’s live and original video programming.

Deezer is the latest music streaming service heading to Google Home
Deezer is the latest music streaming service heading to Google Home9to5google.com

Google Home’s list of compatible features and services has been steadily growing ever since its release, and the latest addition to Google’s smart speaker is Deezer – the fifth music streaming option – which joins Google Play Music, YouTube Music, Pandora, and Spotify.

Issue #217: Amazon Music Rolling Out Activities For Alexa Users; Sirius XM To Broadcast Phish Baker’s Dozen Finale Live From The Garden

Amazon Music Rolling Out Activities For Alexa Users
Amazon Music Rolling Out Activities For Alexa Userswww.billboard.com
Amazon Music today announced it is officially rolling out “activities” via Alexa, it’s smart speaker system which will be made exclusively available to the service’s Prime Music and Amazon Music Unlimited listeners.

Inside the Music Publishing World's Epic Struggle to Build a Single Song Database
Inside the Music Publishing World's Epic Struggle to Build a Single Song Databasewww.billboard.com
When ASCAP and BMI announced July 26 that they had been working together for almost two years on a joint database for the more than 20 million songs they represent combined, they had thought that all sectors of the music industry would welcome the news.

DJ Jonas Blue: Streaming stats have become more important than chart-toppers
DJ Jonas Blue: Streaming stats have become more important than chart-toppers www.irishexaminer.com

British DJ Jonas Blue said streaming statistics have become more important than chart number ones for musicians as he described how modern technology has reshaped the music industry.

Sirius XM Jam On To Broadcast Phish Baker's Dozen Finale Live From The Garden
Sirius XM Jam On To Broadcast Phish Baker's Dozen Finale Live From The Gardenwww.jambase.com
Listen to Sunday’s Phish Baker’s Dozen finale live from New York City on SiriusXM’s Jam On channel.

Weav, from the Founder of Google Maps, Puts Users in Sync with Their Songs with Its 'Adaptive Music' Technology
Weav, from the Founder of Google Maps, Puts Users in Sync with Their Songs with Its 'Adaptive Music' Technologywww.pastemagazine.com
The company has developed a new music engine that allows artists to manipulate their song and adjust the tempo based on what the listener is doing.

Metallica, LeBron James, Alicia Keys, Miley Cyrus & More Star in New 'Carpool Karaoke' Trailer
Metallica, LeBron James, Alicia Keys, Miley Cyrus & More Star in New 'Carpool Karaoke' Trailerwww.billboard.com
So many stars in this teaser they barely fit in the car. Noah Cyrus, Will Smith, Metallica, Alicia Keys, Shaquille O’Neal, Seth MacFarlane, Blake Shelton, “Game of Thrones” stars Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner are among the big names.

A Hi-Res Digital Music Player For Just 10% Of The Price Of Big Brand Players
A Hi-Res Digital Music Player For Just 10% Of The Price Of Big Brand Playerswww.forbes.com
This superbly built little music player is certified to play Hi-Res music formats and it offers exceptional value for money. Well worth a listen and an affordable way to dip your toe into the world of Hi-Res music.

 Programmatic radio: Are you ready for it?
Programmatic radio: Are you ready for it?www.marketing-interactive.com
What are the benefits behind programmatic radio?

Amanda Cerny Named Head of LiveXLive’s New Digital Talent Division
Amanda Cerny Named Head of LiveXLive’s New Digital Talent Divisionvariety.com
LiveXLive Media is launching a new digital talent division led by internet celeb Amanda Cerny, looking to amass an army of social followers to promote its music-streaming platform.

Asian live-streaming service M17 raises $40M for expansion
Asian live-streaming service M17 raises $40M for expansiontechcrunch.com
Asian streaming company M17 Entertainment, which recently merged with Singapore-based dating startup Paktor, has closed a $40 million Series A round. This..

5 good reasons to pay for Spotify
5 good reasons to pay for Spotifywww.cnet.com
Other than removing ads.

Issue #216: Blockchain Can Make Soundcloud a Revolutionary Music Label; Why Spotify Lowered the Volume of Songs

Blockchain can make Soundcloud a Revolutionary Music Label
Blockchain can make Soundcloud a Revolutionary Music Labelmedium.com
The world is full of extraordinary songs by artists with no fans, labels or money behind them. These songs go nowhere because exposure to audiences is carefully controlled by companies who seek to…

Why Spotify Lowered the Volume of Songs and Ended Hegemonic Loudness
Why Spotify Lowered the Volume of Songs and Ended Hegemonic Loudnessmotherboard.vice.com
Your ears will appreciate the end of the “Loudness Wars.”

Pandora refocuses on ‘audience growth’ over subscriptions
Pandora refocuses on ‘audience growth’ over subscriptionsmusically.com
Pandora reported better-than-expected financial results for the second quarter of 2017 last night, with revenues up 10% year-on-year to $376.8m.

If SoundCloud Disappears, What Happens to Its Music Culture?
If SoundCloud Disappears, What Happens to Its Music Culture?www.nytimes.com
The platform offered a public space with monetization as an afterthought. Now it could simply be deleted.

Music AI: A Close Look at How Gracenote Uses Artificial Intelligence
Music AI: A Close Look at How Gracenote Uses Artificial Intelligencevariety.com
Gracenote has taught computers to detect vibes and emotions to classify a catalog of 100 million sound recordings.

Benji Rogers on blockchain: 'We can’t rush this. It’s worth getting right'
Benji Rogers on blockchain: 'We can’t rush this. It’s worth getting right'musically.com
Dot Blockchain founder Benji Rogers is explaining to Music Ally one of the long-term benefits he believes blockchain technology will bring to musicians.

Sony puts new Diplo single behind streaming paywall in India
Sony puts new Diplo single behind streaming paywall in Indiawww.musicbusinessworldwide.com

Many predicted that 2017 would become a year where major new artist releases are regularly ‘windowed’ on pay-only tiers of streaming services.

SiriusXM Announces 2017 'Days Between' Series On Grateful Dead Channel
SiriusXM Announces 2017 'Days Between' Series On Grateful Dead Channelwww.jambase.com
The schedule for SiriusXM’s annual ‘Days Between’ tribute to Jerry Garcia has been revealed.

Skip Songs in Spotify using Custom Rules with Skipify
Skip Songs in Spotify using Custom Rules with Skipifywww.xda-developers.com
If you don’t want to hear a certain artist, album or song on Spotify, then you can use the Skipify application to automatically skip songs.

BookMyShow Acquires nFusion To Bolster Music Streaming Service Jukebox
BookMyShow Acquires nFusion To Bolster Music Streaming Service Jukeboxinc42.com
The nFusion acquisition is the fourth deal BookMyShow has struck in 2017. It is the first after music streaming service Jukebox launched.

Issue #211: Hi-Res Audio: New Standard Or Cash Grab?; The Chinese Music Business is Set to Explode

Hi-Res Audio: New Standard Or Cash Grab?
Hi-Res Audio: New Standard Or Cash Grab?blog.dataart.com

As a growing number of streaming platforms offer higher quality audio options for an additional cost, a question arises: How many consumers are truly willing to pay more for hi-res audio files?

Sweet streams: How concert video is democratising the live biz
Sweet streams: How concert video is democratising the live bizwww.iq-mag.net
Leading execs tell Eamonn Forde how lower barriers to entry – and all-important viewer data – are bringing more live music to more people than ever before.

BMI, ASCAP to Combine Music Databases
BMI, ASCAP to Combine Music Databases www.broadcastingcable.com

Performance rights groups ASCAP and BMI have teamed up to create what they are billing as a “single, comprehensive database of musical works from their combined repertories that will deliver an authoritative view of ownership shares in the vast majority of music licensed in the United States.”

Latest Turn in Radio's Licensing Battles Hinges on Location, Location, Location
Latest Turn in Radio's Licensing Battles Hinges on Location, Location, Locationwww.billboard.com
What should radio stations have to pay to play songs by the likes of Don Henley, Drake and Prince?

'There are 365m people in China willing to pay for entertainment. The music market is about to explode.'
'There are 365m people in China willing to pay for entertainment. The music market is about to explode.'www.musicbusinessworldwide.com

The Chinese music business is set to explode. Many executives across the US, UK and Europe look east and rightfully tip the Asian continent as the next great land of opportunity.

Soundcloud’s Fatal Mistake
Soundcloud’s Fatal Mistakemedium.com
After hearing the dire news published by TechCrunch about Soundcloud’s unfortunate financial position, I have a lot of thoughts to share.

Introducing Asbury Music - An online radio station as unique as New Jersey
Introducing Asbury Music – An online radio station as unique as New Jerseywww.newjerseystage.com
Introducing Asbury Music – An online radio station as unique as New Jersey – New Jersey Stage

Blockchain startup Voise prepares for alpha-client launch
Blockchain startup Voise prepares for alpha-client launchmusically.com
We wrote about blockchain/music startup Voise in June when we spotted its profile on an investment site: it’s preparing for launch now.

Stream All of Joanna Newsom’s Albums on Apple Music
Stream All of Joanna Newsom’s Albums on Apple Musicflavorwire.com

Indie label Drag City and Joanna Newsom’s very understandable former aversion to streaming services — particularly Spotify — also meant that if one’s C.D. player, or turntable broke, they’d be pretty out of luck if they wanted a convenient way to listen to a Newsom album.

5 reasons why you should use the Spotify desktop app
5 reasons why you should use the Spotify desktop appwww.cnet.com
It can do things the mobile app can’t.

Issue #205: SiriusXM Becomes Music’s New Best Frenemy; Despacito Breaks Global Streaming Record

SiriusXM Becomes Music's New Best Frenemy Amid Pandora Investment & Capitol Hill Debates
SiriusXM Becomes Music's New Best Frenemy Amid Pandora Investment & Capitol Hill Debateswww.billboard.com
With Congress set to address pre-1972 copyright laws, labels are lining up against the satellite radio service — with the two sides preparing to battle over millions.

Judge Rejects Lawsuits Over Internet Music Prices
Judge Rejects Lawsuits Over Internet Music Pricesfortune.com
It’s an 11-year-old suit over Internet music prices that is a win for Sony and Warner Music.

Despacito breaks global streaming record
Despacito breaks global streaming recordwww.bbc.com
Luis Fonsi’s single becomes the most-streamed song of all time, overtaking Justin Bieber’s Sorry.

The Death of SoundCloud Should Scare Music Lovers
The Death of SoundCloud Should Scare Music Loverswww.vulture.com
SoundCloud is reportedly closer to running out of funds than many expected.

Deezer Bets on the Beautiful Game to Score More U.S. Subscribers
Deezer Bets on the Beautiful Game to Score More U.S. Subscriberswww.billboard.com
FC Barcelona’s U.S. initiatives represent an under-exploited – opportunity for its partner music service to score new subscribers.

This Is How Streaming Became the New Platinum Standard
This Is How Streaming Became the New Platinum Standardwww.xxlmag.com
XXL gives an inside look at how streaming has changed the music industry.

A Team of Volunteers Is Archiving SoundCloud in Case It Dies
A Team of Volunteers Is Archiving SoundCloud in Case It Diesmotherboard.vice.com
Spurred by recent reports the German streaming music and audio company may be running out of cash, The Archive Team is racing to preserve sound files—at high cost.

Spotify Continues To Adapt With The Streaming World
Spotify Continues To Adapt With The Streaming Worldwww.dailyrindblog.com
With streaming services in constant flux, we’ve decided to touch on recent updates that have surfaced for Spotify including Spotify for Artists and Codes.

The Rise of Internet Radio in Shanghai
The Rise of Internet Radio in Shanghaiwww.cityweekend.com.cn
The Beat: The Rise of Internet Radio in Shanghai. While clubs in this city have never been in short supply but music radio seems to be in its emerging stages. 

Streaming is now the dominant platform for music consumption
Streaming is now the dominant platform for music consumptionwww.forbesindia.com

Aggregate earnings of the Celebrity 100 directly related to streaming has surged to $387 million from $177 million last year.

Nothing Good Lasts Forever, So Back Up Your Music
Nothing Good Lasts Forever, So Back Up Your Musicthump.vice.com
The recent SoundCloud news has sent a ripple of file anxiety through the music community.

A Few Thoughts as I Publish the 200th Issue of My Daily Email

Today (7–12) I published issue #200 of my Platform & Stream daily email. That’s a lot of music streaming news I have curated since debuting the project almost a year ago.

I wasn’t sure I would be able to find enough legitimate news about music streaming to publish a daily email featuring 10–11 stories. Maybe 3-times per-week at best. But I have been pleasantly surprised to find a wealth of great news and commentary focused on the business and culture of music streaming.

I also like to pull in a variety of topics that impact the music business and streaming platforms — data, Blockchain, copyright, AI/VR, and monetization, to name a few. I believe it all blends together into a thorough look at what’s going on with music streaming from one day to the next.

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