DMS Snap Shot – UK Music Industry, Happy Birthday and Spotify
DMS Snap Shot:
Without having to search the web too hard, here are 3 Top Music Industry Stories from this week.
UK Music Industry Soars To A Much Higher Level Of £1.06 Billion In 2015
Witnessing such a massive growth in UK’s music market industry since a decade, the UK music industry saw a challenging rise in the number of streams doubling to £27 million, which is a greater and better revenue than what they have had for almost a decade!
One of the big players behind this success was the mega-selling new album released by Adele which drove the UK music industry to its first prosperity by 3.5% in 2015. This digital revolution that runs parallel to music streaming on popular digital services such as Spotify and Apple Music has been driven by British artists, occupying 6 slots in the top 10 best-selling albums last year.
An analyst, Mark Mulligan at a media consultancy firm, Media Research spoke about this benchmark to The Guardian:
“Much of the overall music market growth can be attributed to the Adele effect.”
Other famous artists including Ed Sheeran tops the most streamed artist list, ranking sixth with Thinking Out Loud. 4 of the top 10 best-selling albums are recorded by UK artists Coldplay, Sam Smith, One Direction and Pink Floyd.
With this comes the roaring promise of the UK music industry’s streaming market and the potential that it brings with it in 2016.
The Famous Melody, ‘Happy Birthday’ Will Finally Enter The Public Domain As Music Publisher Warner/Chappell Ends Song Lawsuit
After a long and stretching history since music publisher Warner/Chappell bought the rights for the famous ‘Happy Birthday’ song in 1998 for £15.1 million, it is now finally declared that no other firm will have to pay a fee for licensing the song for movies and TV. According to The Guardian, it is estimated that Warner/Chappell made an estimated £13.7 million a year, since 1998, for allowing composers and firms to use the song for movies and TV. This settlement is not final until it is approved by King in a hearing scheduled for 14 March 2016.
After the settlement and preliminary approval is met, the legal team that was representing the plaintiffs will be handed over £3.18 million fees for their work on the case and the rest £9.6 million will be spent to compensate every composer or firm that has a paid a licensing fee to music publisher Warner/Chappell for the song.
Randall Newman, an attorney for the plaintiffs, when asked about the current situation declared:
“Happy Birthday is finally free after 80 years. Finally, the charade is over. It’s unbelievable.”
Spotify Considering Granting Artists To Release Albums Only To Paid Subscribers, Not Free Users.
Since the birth of Spotify in 2008, this digital services company has been maintaining a policy of all its music being available to both free and paid subscribers. That policy might be changing drastically to allow some artists to release albums only to its 20 million-plus subscribers.
In the past, the controversy that erupted with Taylor Swift withdrawing her entire back catalogue from Spotify because of her unmet desire of preserving her music for premium members on Spotify had also been under the limelight to bring forth a policy that meets the artists’ needs as well as the subscribers.
Spotify’s global head of communications, Jonathan Prince mentioned in a statement:
“We are 100% committed to our model because we believe that a free, ad-supported tier combined with a more robust premium tier is the best way to deliver music to fans, create value for artists and songwriters, and grow the industry.”
According to The Guardian, Swift, Coldplay, Beyoncé, Adele and other big artists have pressed Spotify to change its policy in recent years.
In retaliation, Daniel Ek who is Spotify’s chief executive claimed that:
“More than 80% of our subscribers started as free users. If you take away only one thing, it should be this: No free, no paid, no $2 billion.”
Hence, this unending strife has led to Spotify reviewing its policy of not allowing artists to reserve their music albums for paying members only, resulting in music being inaccessible to Spotify’s free users.
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