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Thread: General Thoughts on Streaming Services

  1. #26
    Member wiz_d_kidd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve F. View Post
    The largest profits for THE ARTIST come from BandCamp.
    That is mostly correct. I saw this on the web a year or two ago...

    If an artist or band is unsigned, they can make the most money by selling a physical album themselves. That's because there's no middle man, so they earn 100% of the profits. But, putting together the upfront money to create a CD can be difficult for many musicians, so they turn to digital services. In that case, their best bet is selling album downloads with a distributor through cdbaby, ReverbNation or tunecore. With those services, the artist can earn $8.99 if they sell an album for $9.99.

    Bandcamp is another good choice for musicians, because they can earn $8.50 for every $10 album they sell. Popular services like iTunes, Amazon and Google Play aren't such a good deal. A $9.99 album on iTunes will earn a signed artist just $1.11. Single track downloads that cost $0.99 will earn signed artists only $0.11 on iTunes, Google Play and Amazon.

    Unsigned artists, on the other hand, can earn $0.69 per $0.99 download on iTunes.

    Streaming services aren't a great deal for musicians, either. Unsigned artists earn $0.0179 per play on Google Play and signed artists take home even less, around $0.0073 per play. On Spotify, unsigned artists receive $0.007 per play, and signed musicians get $0.0011 per play.

    Bandcamp makes money through their revenue share on sales, which is 15% for digital, 10% for merch. If an artist or label makes $5,000 worth of annual sales, then they are only charged 10% of the profit from digital sales.

  2. #27
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wiz_d_kidd View Post
    That is mostly correct. .
    When we are speaking of download revenue and / or streaming revenue, which is what the topic is in this thread, it is 100% correct.

    Thank you.
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  3. #28
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve F. View Post
    The largest profits for THE ARTIST come from BandCamp.
    TBH, it's becoming my first option in discovering music and my second potion to buy the physical album (after the B&M stores)

    However, that's if the artistes have pressed CDs (and that's definitely not systematic anymore) and if still have them in stock (not sure they're very keen on repress), so often I have come empty, for their pure loss (and mine)

    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    I hope you’re being cute. The point is that one does not have to (and most don’t) spend $20-25 to legally obtain a copy of an album.
    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    My problem with this is it needlessly exaggerates in order to get the point across. Who the hell is paying $20-25 for an average album purchase?
    You're right, as I'm most often paying between 15 and 20, but that'sd € (not $), so it does happen that I pay slightly over 20$
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  4. #29
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    I can't remember the last time I bought a new CD from a B&M store.

  5. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    ^^^ So you never listened to the radio unless it was a song you own?
    Um not these days, no. In my younger days when bands received revenue from radio play I listened. But Radio is dead. I am talking about today, not 10-50 years ago. I do not purposefully go out to hear something before I own it. If I happen to hear something that piques my interest. I buy it. Is there a problem with that? I am mindful of how music is not free.
    I got nothin'

    ...avoiding any implication that I have ever entertained a cognizant thought.

  6. #31
    Member Gizmotron's Avatar
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    Radio dead? In a metaphysical (?) sort of way, I agree...most things that were worth doing on radio stations have already been done. Long gone are the days of WNEW-FM and other fine stations that played anything they wanted. And of course, there are too many "safe" radio stations nowadays that are so stale and predictable...they play safe music that has been Focus-Group tested or proven by its pedigree (i.e. played a zillion times so everyone recognizes it). But yet there are still some cool things happening on the dial such as college stations, community stations, and a few that buck the trend.

    And of course there is Sirius/XM. (But that is mostly another topic for another day.)

    But importantly, nothing has changed with the royalties artists earn from being played on the radio, right? ASCAP/BMI see to that, yes? Ditto for bars and restaurants. I bet it isn't much but it is income.

    But anyway, the topic is Streaming. As a 60 year old guy, it probably isn't surprising that I lean towards the old ways of listening to music. I buy CDs. I play them. I like the physical product. I like the artwork. I rip them to my computer in Lossless files and have high-capacity iPods to listen. I use them as learning tools and play by ear to them.

    I have experimented with streaming music. I use Pandora at work so we can listen to music. I have been around other people that use different services and I have paid attention to the services. I cannot say that I am impressed. Pandora seems to have lots of limitations. So many of the "stations" are short; they repeat the same tunes quickly. They always seem to play the same tunes in the same order (THAT is a drag). There are far too many live tunes (for my taste) played. (I have heard that the royalties are less on live tunes but I don't know that for a fact.) So many of the songs that are played are not really related to the artist I have specified. Or they seem to be related only on a superficial level. It is as if no one that has any experience in music looks at their algorithms and playlists. An analogy would be if your podiatrist bought a specific pair fashionable shoes for you without asking you...he has no idea what you really like to wear, what colors your clothes are, but he does know your show size and width.

    I am sure that zillions of people find Pandora to be fine. And to be fair, a few times I HAVE been turned on to something new that I liked (and so I went out and purchased a copy).
    But to me, as a passionate listener of music, I find that I am far better off being my own DJ the vast majority of the time. It is not a big politico thing to me or a retro-grouch position; it simply comes down to wanting to maximize my musical pleasure. Streaming service, like radio, seem geared to the masses. Even when listening to something rare and extreme, the imprint of the needs and wants of the masses is apparent when the next tune is spooled up.

    All the issues about the artist not getting his due payments are troubling to me but I don't know all the details so I cannot really comment.

    Bottom line: machines are great at some things but human brains are much better for other things. I wanna use mine a bit more before I need a drool cup.

  7. #32
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    I can't remember the last time I bought a new CD from a B&M store.
    Not in this century for me.

  8. #33
    Member Guitarplyrjvb's Avatar
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    Given how cheap bandwith is becoming, I imagine all streaming services will essentially be streaming at CD quality or better in the very near future.

  9. #34
    Shopping for CD's at thrift or second hand stores is a great thing these days. There are a ton of homeless CD's just looking for someone to adopt them and give them the love that they deserve.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by fiberman View Post
    Shopping for CD's at thrift or second hand stores is a great thing these days. There are a ton of homeless CD's just looking for someone to adopt them and give them the love that they deserve.
    Ironically, many of those are Sarah McLachlan CDs and no one ever buys them.

  11. #36
    If you like 90's rock CDs you'll have a great time at a thrift store.

  12. #37
    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fiberman View Post
    Shopping for CD's at thrift or second hand stores is a great thing these days. There are a ton of homeless CD's just looking for someone to adopt them and give them the love that they deserve.
    I also find Thrift Stores a great source for old cassettes and vinyl. Not necessarily Goodwill, who carelessly throw their records on a shelf, but the smaller mom and pop thrift stores.
    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"--Dalai Lama

  13. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by progmatist View Post
    My problem with streaming music is it's going to be lossy compressed, no way around that.
    The service I use (Tidal) offers a 'master quality' option for certain releases. It's completely lossless, and may even (or so they claim) be of higher quality than your average CD, since it's supposed to come straight from the original source of the CDs themselves. It's a paid service, but hey. Pursuit of perfection and all.

    I couldn't find too many master quality prog releases, but nearly everything is in hi-fi, and are very satisfying. They have a massive collection of stuff I've found really difficult to purchase physical copies of as well. I've noticed absolutely no difference between them and the original CDs, even during intensive, meditative listens. The few master albums I did find do indeed sound stunning. It's a great step in the right direction for fans of streaming services.

    I'm still kind of torn on the whole thing in general. I appreciate that I'm able to have unparalleled access to practically the entire western cultural cannon of music, but I don't like being tied to my devices, and sometimes, less is more. Without a good DAC, the highest quality streaming is kind of pointless, and I feel like I end up being tempted into reckless listening sessions because it's just so easy. Browse the internet, send messages, look at por uh, pictures of porcupines, get embroiled in the absurd culture war, etc while I'm listening. It's just so easy to put on in the background. I never used to listen this way and it's a growing habit that I'm trying to nip in the bud before it blossoms into some kind of compulsive mental disorder (God knows I've got enough already.)

    It's a double edged sword. While I've discovered some amazing bands I never would have otherwise (Poil! Holy shit, thank you, Tidal) it's also something that can get away from you in my experience. I find myself opting out of new songs that don't grab me faster, dismissing potential bands without giving them the same attention I would have before streaming was a thing. This pains me, because some of my favorite albums of the past were ones that took time to grow on me. Am I sabotaging myself? Is the benefit--access to an infinity of music--actually a poison in disguise? It feels like a toss up between choosing an infinite body of work to consume half heartedly in an attempt to hear it all, or only a few shelves of music I can truly appreciate intimately.

    I will say this. Buying new physical copies of music I like and sitting down to listen is a lot more rewarding than playing ten new albums on Tidal back to back, at least for me. I think humans are inherently driven by a need to integrate more stimulus into our memories than what the internet can provide. It's harder to encode memories that lack a visceral, physical component, which is why I can still remember where I was and what I was doing when I first heard Magma and almost nothing of bands I discovered streaming, because all I was doing was moving one cluster of pixels onto another and pressing a button. Nowhere near the satisfaction of walking to the store with all its sights and smells, buying a record, discussing it with another person at the counter, and being obliterated by it in a room set aside exclusively for attentive listening is a chain of experience much harder to forget.

    Still, though. It gave me Poil.

    Maybe in the future, streaming services will do more to add to the experience and make it feel a little less neutered. I'd love to see something where the complete artwork and packaging of each album is included for the listener to browse for example.

  14. #39
    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guntrip View Post
    Without a good DAC, the highest quality streaming is kind of pointless....
    I don't know of any phone with a high quality DAC. As far as I know, they all use a 16/48 DAC. The only way I could enjoy Tidal is tethered to my couch or computer chair. My company would likely frown upon my using their bandwidth, streaming higher than CD quality music.
    Last edited by progmatist; 09-02-2019 at 01:27 PM.
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  15. #40
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    just another social media ruse to make money.

  16. #41
    Occipital Provocatee Plasmatopia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yodelgoat View Post
    I listen to what I own, if I do not own it, I do not listen - except for politeness when someone is sharing something with me. It's personal with me and I have enough music that I don't need to listen to something I don't own. I am at that stage in life where I can afford to buy whatever music I want. I buy lots of stuff that I will probably never get to listen to more than once, but I like owning what I listen to. No need to test drive anything, other than a few seconds worth. Buy it. Of course, I don't do this with music I hear thru advertising and television and the like... Accidental listening is not something I enjoy, in fact I find it mostly irritating. Tonight someone was playing Taylor Swifts new song - or that's what they said it was. I just tuned it out. Not interested. That describes my feelings about most new music... Prog, and perhaps Classical, or Rock and Blues excepted.
    This is sort of where I'm at as well. In general I don't really have the listening time I would like these days. I'm often buying from artists I already feel safe taking a chance on either from my own past experience or conversations here on PE. I don't have the mental bandwidth to absorb a constant stream of random music that I may or may not want to explore further and I usually feel that I have a large enough collection now that I need to spend some of my time checking out things in my collection that didn't receive much attention when I first got them.
    Just sitting at home rocking back and forth and jealously caressing my invisible collection of theoretical assets.

  17. #42
    Orange Tick Squasher Buddhabreath's Avatar
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    Radio seems to be dead for "progressive rock", however we may define it, but it is far from dead.

    I know that this is veering off topic a bit, but I worked for over ten years at THE company that produced radio ratings and I can tell you first hand that radio has a market penetration of over 90% of US adults and last I saw had a revenue of around $20 billion annually. In major markets a single point in the ratings are worth millions and there is usually intense criticism and politics around the methodology of how those ratings are produced. Most of the revenue (and audience) comprises commuters during morning and afternoon drive time. In 1973 many of those commuters wanted to listed to Yes or ELP, today they are listening to talk radio, country music, rap/pop/poop etc. That's why I listen to my own music or podcasts when I commute.

    There are still around 15K stations in the US, if Jeff Bezos bought 10% of them and changed the format to progressive rock we'd have a prog rock boom like we've never seen before. Also if I could shit gold, I'd be rich!
    The combined fortunes of the world's 26 richest individuals reached $1.4 trillion last year — the same amount as the total wealth of the 3.8 billion poorest people.

  18. #43
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buddhabreath View Post
    There are still around 15K stations in the US, if Jeff Bezos bought 10% of them and changed the format to progressive rock we'd have a prog rock boom like we've never seen before.
    IMO, this is a popular fallacy. The giant, vast majority of people are not interested in any variation of 'progressive rock', no matter how it is defined, and, given a format like this, listeners would simply change the channel to something else.

    We'll never know because it won't happen, but i feel quite secure in stating this.

    Quote Originally Posted by Buddhabreath View Post
    Also if I could shit gold, I'd be rich!
    We are in agreement on this one.
    Steve F.

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    www.cuneiformrecords.com

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    This space for rent: Well established location. Perfect opportunity for an up and coming smart-ass to benefit from our years of provocation!

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    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  19. #44
    Streaming works for finding new bands, and if I like that band I will purchase a physical copy (CD) if it's available. A stream of one song pays the artist something like 1/1000 of a penny. No wonder most current musicians need a day job to survive.

  20. #45
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grumpyprogfan View Post
    A stream of one song pays the artist something like 1/1000 of a penny. No wonder most current musicians need a day job to survive.
    Both I, as record label, and artist as artist, make significantly more money by selling 100 copies of a release on BandCamp than we do if a song streams 1 million times.

    Since we are on a progressive rock forum, which is more likely to happen? 100? or 1,000,000?

    [I hope Buddha Breath is still paying attention....]
    Steve F.

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    This space for rent: Well established location. Perfect opportunity for an up and coming smart-ass to benefit from our years of provocation!

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    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  21. #46
    Orange Tick Squasher Buddhabreath's Avatar
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    [I hope Buddha Breath is still paying attention....]
    Oh I am.

    IMO, this is a popular fallacy. The giant, vast majority of people are not interested in any variation of 'progressive rock', no matter how it is defined, and, given a format like this, listeners would simply change the channel to something else.
    Well, I was being kinda snarky, sarcastic, hyperbolic and stupid as is my want, and while my fantasy of having a bunch of "prog rock" stations would be a sea-level change given the current state of things, I must agree that most would simply just change the channel, but like you said we'll never know.

    Still, I like to believe that more exposure would create more adherents. I think that's reasonable. I'll bet you dollars to doogie doodles that if millions of people heard say, "Dense" from "Ceux du Dehors", 90% would change the channel, 10% would listen and a few % would think "WTF is that? I need to hear more of this!" But maybe once again I'm in fantasy land.

    To the other point, yes even artists in heavy rotation on Bezos' prog network would probably fair poorly @ 1/1000th of a penny per play on the streaming services and the golden stream will merely trickle down the backs of said artists.

    Anyway, thanks once again for squashing my feckless fantasies with your ruthless logic.
    The combined fortunes of the world's 26 richest individuals reached $1.4 trillion last year — the same amount as the total wealth of the 3.8 billion poorest people.

  22. #47
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buddhabreath View Post
    Anyway, thanks once again for squashing my feckless fantasies with your ruthless logic.
    I been doing it to you for ... what ... 40 years?

    Why stop now?
    Steve F.

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    This space for rent: Well established location. Perfect opportunity for an up and coming smart-ass to benefit from our years of provocation!

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    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  23. #48
    Orange Tick Squasher Buddhabreath's Avatar
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    ^^^

    I see no reason whatsoever. Hell, somebody's gotta set me straight!
    The combined fortunes of the world's 26 richest individuals reached $1.4 trillion last year — the same amount as the total wealth of the 3.8 billion poorest people.

  24. #49
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    P.S. I don't disagree that more exposure would make more fans. It would. It just wouldn't be a sea-change and the costs of adding those fans wouldn't be worth it in a capitalistic society when dealing with the huge amounts of money involved and the fact that one must always provide best returns for share-holders.

    Believe me, there would not ever have been a Wayside Music or a Cuneiform Records if there were shareholders. I don't need anyone to cry for me; I've done alright and I have a very comfortable life in a home (and with a spouse) that I love and I've done something I was interested in for my entire life.

    But it was definitely not the smartest way to invest my money and life and work if 'smart' = 'maximum financial gain'....
    Steve F.

    www.waysidemusic.com
    www.cuneiformrecords.com

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    This space for rent: Well established location. Perfect opportunity for an up and coming smart-ass to benefit from our years of provocation!

    "You run a great label, but sometimes you go out of your way to be a jerk." - Jed Levin

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  25. #50
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    P.S. We should get together some time in person and remember what each other looks like, while getting drunk enough that we can forget what each other looks like!
    Steve F.

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    This space for rent: Well established location. Perfect opportunity for an up and coming smart-ass to benefit from our years of provocation!

    "You run a great label, but sometimes you go out of your way to be a jerk." - Jed Levin

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

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