Today everyone in the recording industry is well aware (or should be) that most people want to make music online.
John Seabrook writes this serious piece in the New Yorker about how technology is impacting on the royalty income for songwriters and their publishers. Last year I was visiting friends in Nashville; a songwriter and a very successful music publisher. They were concerned about the dramatic dive in royalty revenue due to the downturn in sales in favour of streaming music. It has been a downward spiral, firstly from diminishing CD sales; with fans turning to paid digital downloads (some pirated), and now to digital streaming via Spotify, Apple Music and others. With each step the songwriter has suffered.
When a song is streamed on an Internet radio site—Pandora is by far the largest—the holders of publishing copyrights receive just one thousandth of a cent per stream. So a Million streams will net just $10.00 to the publisher to share with the songwriter. Is it any wonder that most (not all) of the songs I hear from today’s modern artists sound like C.R.A.P. Pay peanuts and you get…yes…and not Mandrills either.