I remember writing about Spodify a little over a year ago and I was so wrong. When you get to be my age, you admit when you are wrong, a lot. You also gain wisdom but I never knew or could have ever imagined that streaming would be the beginning of the end. Sadly,this time my prediction is not an error or mistake for it is the end for anyone ever trying to make a living off of their art. Perhaps I was so off base because of my age and in my thinking that no one would ever want to "rent" music. I apologize for my ignorance for sure.
I just couldn't fathom that people would ever rent music when I thought that iTunes was the greatest gift known to man. People tired of paying such a high price for CD'S (for those too young to remember a CD it was like a little Frisbee that you throw with 10-12 songs on it costing $15-$20.00). To be able to purchase just a single track was amazing to me. I am sad to know that I was wrong but not from ego but for every songwriter out there. Where can one possibly go from here? Whether it is Spodify, Pandora or now Beats, I wish they would all just Beat It and never have come into fruition.
I decided to try Beats for their free trial and I hate to admit that I loved it. However, each time I played whatever I wanted, I literally felt like I was taking food out of the mouths of someone and/or their family.My joy was further outweighed by my moral dilemma. According to the source, "digitalmusicnews: and a tweet from the Divine Miss M herself, Bette Midler's song played 4,175149 times on Pandora and she received a check for $114.11! How is this even legal? This seems like downright thievery to me. But I digress, we can't fight or change what is going to be and that is that a few people will always make a shitload of the money while the other one's are left with breadcrumbs.
Miranda Lambert may sing a song about a time when things were just "automatic" but those simple days are long gone. The streaming market is now so saturated that you actually have to think of creative ways to not have your music actually played for pennies. I.e. Beyoncé's album only available on iTunes or other select artists only allowing their music available in Wallyworld or Target. I am at a loss here for sure. All I can do is live by my own moral code but the world keeps on turning and music has become so cheapened like a Chinese product in Wal-Mart. The whole thing makes me very sad for songwriters. People would rather buy or rent cheap stuff instead of valuing all the hard work and talent it takes to give them the joy of music. Just because something is intangible doesn't mean it should be cheapened or given away for less than a penny. Here is my two cents. Pay these people a fair royalty rate no different than terrestrial radio and then you would be doing the right thing! Two cents is more than someone is even making on their song with streaming! Say that to yourself ten times. It will never happen so I will stick with iTunes and the radio so that people get paid. Good Luck!
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