If you have not heard from musicians, Spotify does indeed suck. Many artists over the past couple of years have complained about the paltry revenues from streaming. This is no joke. Per song streamed on Spotify, I as an indie artist through Distrokid make $0.00080. By all measures this sucks. Pandora is also especially awful. If you are asking do other services do better, yes, yes they do. This is why it is worth it to spend $8 – $10 elsewhere, and well, go with something that actually generates meaningful revenue for artists.
Several services pay about a penny or more per song stream, though it tends to fluctuate a bit. Google Play All Access being one of the prime examples as it pays at least a penny per song streamed. While this may not seem large, in aggregate it can add up to a decent living. I am not sure how well Apple’s new service pays though, my hope is they have a similar or better pay model. The two biggest advantages of both Google Play and Apple Music is they both offer a purchase option as well.
I am not looking to become a millionaire off my experimental electronic music. PraxisCat is honestly too weird for most people to ever achieve mass popularity. But when you hear people complain about Spotify and Pandora and the terrible streaming royalties per song with these services, they are not telling a lie. But what has not been talked about is the fact there are far better options out there, and it is worthwhile to do the research to see who is providing musicians a living, and who is literally starving them. I know millionaire pop artists are not the best people to complain about this. I am not a millionaire pop artist, neither are many of the people I know those making music and selling it over the interwebs, playing shows at your local venues, and making music we care about deeply. Spotify does indeed suck, this is one of those few instances where the pop stars, and working musicians agree. The economics of streaming are not as good as people buying albums, but if you must stream, do your research, and find out how much artists are getting from each song streamed. I am going with Google Play myself, but this is because I know how much artists are getting from it.
PraxisCat / MsModular