The New Streaming Service by Sub Pop Records Will Promote Independent Labels and Young Artists
In a world of pirating, internet radio (such as Pandora or Spotify), and YouTube, making it in the music industry is harder than ever. While these services are great for audiences that want to listen to music without having to pay for each song, this is really hurting bands that have smaller audiences.
According to The New York Times, Sub Pop Records has a new strategy to help them compete with this shift:
“Last month, Sub Pop Records, an independent label that introduced artists including Nirvana and the Shins, announced a partnership with Drip.fm, a subscription streaming and download service. Fans who sign up for the Sub Pop feed on Drip.fm will pay 10 [dollar] a month in exchange for albums, singles and special exclusives from the label.”
Instead of fighting the shift (or simply ignoring it), Sub Pop Records has presented a new way to go with the flow without hurting smaller, growing bands. By offering their own streaming service, they are making way for more bands to enter the scene without breaking the bank.
The key to this new way of streaming music is that artists and labels are able to bring together a band and their audience on their own terms. This also allows audience members and fans to feel more connected to bands, and possibly create a more intimate connection between the two.
Richard Laing, Sub Pop’s Director of Sales, hopes this partnership with Drip.fm will help smaller bands to attract more fans while simultaneously helping bands actually make some money for their music and efforts. In the end, record sales are just not as profitable as they were over 20 years ago, so adjusting to the new norm is important to keep the music industry booming. Especially since the latest numbers suggest that even music downloads are steadily declining. In the last year alone, they have declined nearly 12 percent.
“Instead of people seeking out recommendations from any kind of algorithm, they’re seeking that out from our label and what we’re looking to put out,” he told The New York Times.
Right now, musicians and artists are simply not able to make a living off their music. While Pandora and other streaming services are great for mainstream artists that are making a few cents off royalties every time it is played, independent artists simply are not. Independent artists are making money off of concerts and tours, not digital downloads, record sales, or even streaming services.
What do you think of this shift? Will you sign up for Sub Pop Record’s Drip.fm? Do you think this strategy will work? How do you listen or purchase music? More importantly, how do you discover new music? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or tweet me @kateeb790!