By: Amanda Anderson-Niles
If you’ve been keeping up with Jay Z’s latest business move, than you already know he has partnered up with multiple A list music artists to take over the streaming business.
The rapper has purchased Aspiro for reportedly $56 million to create Tidal. The streaming service is supposed to rival the ever so popular Spotify. For the same price ($9.99 a month for premium and $19.99 a month for Hi Def), Jay Z is hoping artists and music makers can start making decent money from streams.
Artists can actually become partners with Tidal and stand to make more money from music.
So far heavyweights such as Rihanna, Beyonce, Usher, Alicia Keys, Kanye West and Madonna have jumped on board.
While artists are rallying behind the cause, the majority of the media is hard at work to convince the general public not to give the new streaming project a chance.
Major publications like Tech Crunch are already calling the service “doomed,” while others such as Wired are telling music fans the service is “great for artists” but not great for them.
It’s kind of strange to see such respectable publications so determined to make all these artists back down on what they are actually owed. But with it looking as if artists may agree to exclusive album releasing deals with Tidal, the media’s decision to attack Tidal starts to make sense. Jay Z is pissing off a lot of important people.
Regardless, Jay Z is standing firm. On the venture, he tells Billboard:
“We didn’t like the direction music was going and thought maybe we could get in and strike an honest blow and if, you know, the very least we did was make people wake up and try to improve the free vs. paid system, and promote fair trade, then it would be a win for us anyway.
“Music is … imagine your life without music. It’s a very valuable part of your life, and like I said, that’s why we got in this business. It seems to be going the other way. People are not respecting the music, and [are] devaluing it and devaluing what it really means. People really feel like music is free, but will pay $6 for water. You can drink water free out of the tap, and it’s good water. But they’re OK paying for it. It’s just the mind-set right now.
“For someone like me, I can go on tour. But what about the people working on the record, the content creators and not just the artists? If they’re not being compensated properly, then I think we’ll lose some writers and producers and people like that who depend on fair trade. Some would probably have to take another job, and I think we’ll lose some great writers in the process. Is it fair? No. If you put in work, everyone else, you go to work you get paid. That’s fair trade. It’s what our country is built on.”
Jay once again expresses that he feels this must be done to ensure artists and content creators are making the money they deserve from streaming:
“I’m just saying the producers and people who work on music are getting left out — that’s when it starts getting criminal. It’s like you’re working hard and you’re not receiving. In any other business people would be standing before Congress. They have antitrust laws against this kind of behavior. It almost seems like when it applies to music no one really cares who’s cheated. It’s so disorganized; it’s so disconnected from reality.”