Apple Music和Spotify幫助獨立唱片公司的市場翻倍

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  • Apple Music和Spotify幫助獨立唱片公司的市場翻倍


    ◎串流媒體Apple Music和Spotify因為支付藝人款項較少而遭到很多批評,但一份新報告顯示出一些好消息。獨立唱片公司現在佔音樂市場的40%,是他們在實體音樂銷售時代的兩倍。根據CNET報導,播放不太知名的藝人播放清單是關鍵。

    ◎獨立搖滾品牌Eleven Seven的執行長Allen Kovac引用一份全球獨立網絡報告表示:獨立開發者佔市場份額的40%,是20年前的兩倍。新創公司Canopy的執行長Brian Whitman說,收聽趨勢多樣化,即使不是每個聽眾都想聽獨立音樂,他們也更有可能接觸到它。

    ◎根據Merlin的年度會員調查顯示,獨立音樂的「樂觀指數」來到今年新高,該集團代表著2000多家獨立唱片公司和音樂公司。85%的成員對其業務的未來持樂觀態度,與串流媒體數位收入增長相吻合。播放清單大大改變了聽音樂的方式。聽眾不會播放整張專輯,而是會播放多類型藝人的曲目,這意味著擁有熱門單曲或專輯的重要性遠不如以前那麼重要。Rolling Stone分析發現,世界上最知名藝人在過去三年中的總流量顯著下降,去年美國音樂串流成長,98%以上來自於從未進入前500強的曲目。


    There's been much criticism of streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify for paying relatively small sums to artists, but a new report today suggests there's some good news in the mix.

    Independent labels now represent 40% of the music market, twice the share they had back in the days of physical music sales, and they have never been more optimistic about the future ...

    CNET reports that playlists surfacing lesser-known artists has been key.

    By nudging people to listen to a wider variety of artists, the services are helping more listeners stumble on music outside the mainstream [...]

    "The Kool-Aid of the majors is over," Allen Kovac, CEO of independent rock label Eleven Seven, said in an interview. He referenced a Worldwide Independent Network report: that indies represent 40% of the market, double their level two decades ago. "That tells you everything" [...]

    Streaming's format — making virtually all the world's music available to hear and personalizing it to what you like — works in favor of independent labels and musicians, said Brian Whitman, CEO of recommendation machine-learning startup Canopy who was one of Spotify's personalization scientists for nearly three years.

    "People's diversity of listening trends upwards the more discovery features you send at them," he said. "Even if not every single listener wanted to hear indie music, they're more likely to be exposed to it."

    That's resulted in the most upbeat feeling ever seen in the indie sector.

    The "optimism index" at indies hit its highest level this year, according to this month's annual membership survey by Merlin, a group representing more than 2,000 independent labels and music companies. Eighty-five percent of its members were optimistic about the future of their businesses, coinciding with their digital income swelling thanks to streaming.

    Playlists have dramatically changed the way we listen to music. Instead of playing an entire album, we'll sample tracks from a much greater variety of artists, including ones who would never before have made it onto our radar. That's true of both Apple Music and Spotify, the effect applying to human-curated playlists and algorithmic ones alike.

    That means having a hit single or album is far less important than it used to be.

    An analysis earlier this month by Rolling Stone found that the world's biggest artists have seen their share of total streams drop significantly over the last three years. More than 98% of the growth in US music streaming last year came from tracks that never broke into the top 500.

    Indeed, one distributor of independent music went as far as to say that streaming services have actually created a new indie sector.

    "If there's one thing that streaming has done for sure, it's created a new independent music industry," said Jorge Brea, founder and CEO of Symphonic Distribution, an independent music company in Tampa, Florida, that's distributed music by Waka Flocka Flame and Deadmau5 in his early days.

    Apple Music pays the highest sums to creators at $12-15 per 1,000 streams, while YouTube pays the lowest at just $1 or so. Payments are typically split between artists, songwriters, and labels. Bad metadata can, however, see some artists and songwriters missing out.