How to get Hulu and SHOWTIME for free with Spotify Premium

How to get unlimited music, TV shows and movies with these three subscription services for one monthly cost.

Spotify previously offered a Spotify Premium and Hulu bundle to all US subscribers. Unfortunately, Spotify don’t offer this deal anymore to regular Premium users, but students are still in luck. For just $4.99 per month, Spotify Premium Students also get Hulu’s ad-supported plan and SHOWTIME at no extra cost. Usually $9.99 per month, Spotify Premium unlocks ad-free and offline music. Usually $5.99 per month, Hulu offers thousands of shows and movies. Usually $10.99 per month, get hit originals and more, ad-free with SHOWTIME.

Higher education students at Title IV accredited institutions in the US, above the age of 18 can subscribe to Spotify Premium Students here. New Premium members can currently get three months free until September 30th. Once your account has been verified, head to your services page to activate Hulu and SHOWTIME.

You can use an existing Hulu or SHOWTIME account, or create a new one when you activate the plan. Hulu will automatically switch your billing to Spotify during the sign up, as long as you don’t have any Hulu Add-ons, and you pay Hulu directly and not through a third party. For existing SHOWTIME subscribers, you’ll need to cancel any current plans and wait for them to expire before activating.

How much is TIDAL monthly?

Image Credit: TIDAL

TIDAL music streaming app offers sleek and sophisticated streaming in high quality audio. Interested? Here’s how much TIDAL costs per month.

Does TIDAL cost money? The platform is aimed at music lovers who want to experience high-quality audio when they stream music online. There’s no free version of TIDAL, unlike Spotify or YouTube Music which offer music streaming for free with advertising.

TIDAL has several subscription tiers and a Family option, and they all offer the same music catalogue, offline play, playlists and music videos.

The cost of TIDAL varies depending on where in the world you are. In the US, the tier begins with Premium, which is $9.99 USD per month. That gets you standard playback quality (320 Kbps).

The HiFi tier is $19.99 per month. A big jump from the standard membership, but an attractive option for fans of high-quality audio – you get lossless High Fidelity CD-quality sound and the highest quality Master Quality audio. HiFi also includes the immersive audio experiences of Dolby Atmos and 360 Reality Audio.

Then there are two Family memberships – Family Premium, $14.99 for standard audio, for up to six family members (including you). Family HiFi gives you all the benefits of the higher audio quality and audio extras for six of your household, for £29.99 per month.

In the US, TIDAL also offers discounted plans for eligible Students ($4.99 or $9.99 for HiFi), and Military and Community Heroes discounts ($5.99 or HiFi for $11.99).

There’s no rush – before you make a decision, you can sign up for a free trial of TIDAL. Right now you can get three months of Premium or HiFi standard or Family memberships for free.


Are you a musician? Want to release your songs on TIDAL? RouteNote can do that for free. Our partnerships with streaming platforms, stores and social media platforms gives you the power to send your music global. As the leading music distributor in Europe

RouteNote’s New Music Releases 24th September 2021: twelve top new tracks from RouteNote artists

Here we have a cracking selection of exciting new releases for you to explore. They’re going straight across RouteNote’s four curated playlists this week.

Each week, RouteNote’s four curated playlists get refreshed with a batch of tasty new releases. We’re always excited to hear the new tracks uploaded to RouteNote before we send them out across the globe.

Our playlists show off some of the finest artists who release music through RouteNote. The four mixes are Hooked, which brings the party, Catalyst with a selection of house music from mellow to pumping, Lo-Fi for chilled hip-hop beats, and finally the easy listening vibes of Tranquilize.

Here’s a selection of twelve of songs that pricked up our ears and made it onto the RouteNote playlists this week.


NALYRO, Edward Snellen – Wolves

Kicking off our Hooked playlist this Selena Gomez cover is perfect for a workout. Get going on the treadmill with a dramatic booming bass drum hit. The delicate vocal is taken on a rollercoaster by the energising bass and atmospheric synth lines.


Swanky Tunes – Never Slow Down

Another great workout track to keep you motivated. “Never Slow Down” opens with gentle acoustic guitar before the steady beat kicks in. That melody will stick in your head, too.


Slydee – Activate My Love

Get pumped for the weekend with this huge high speed dance track from RouteNote’s Hooked playlist. The wild tempo is kept under control by echoing finger clicks and a catchy instrumental line.


JB Hain – moment

Drop it down several gears now and let JB Hain take you on a journey. From our Catalyst playlist, “moment” starts with gentle piano and graduates to glitchy verses, with thumping bass and muted piano slipping in and out.


Know You – Alone with You

Another glitchy treat for our Catalyst playlist. Retro video game sounds mix featuring a dreamy but unsettling vocal from Emily Davina.


NO-VA – Lend Me Your Heart

We’re closing up our Catalyst selections in style with “Lend Me Your Heart,” with an epic orchestral opening that folds into an emotional electronic extravaganza.


Sweet Oscar – A Swing Thing

Heading into the relaxing realms of our Lo-Fi playlist next. “A Swing Thing” skips along with a jazz lilt, a lovely accompaniment to pottering around the house.


golden era – Thats What I Want (lofi version)

The Lil Nas X track “THATS WHAT I WANT” is slowed way down by golden era and replaced with a lofi hip-hop vibe, keeping the catchy tune but repackaging it as an instrumental that’s perfect for helping you to study.


Cloudy Cat – Lofi Lullaby

A cheerful, cute instrumental from Cloudy Cat, “Lofi Lullaby” has chilled video game vibes, rounding off our Lo-Fi selections for this week.


Warmseat, Borrtex – Walking Alone

Finally we have three tracks from the relax-tastic Tranquilize playlist. Taken from the Feuilles EP, this is a perfect track to stroll around to as the air turns autumnal.


Dreamy Kid – cold air

Gorgeous guitar and a gentle beat make “cold air” a great song to wind down to at the end of a frantic day.


Seyu – Dancer

The final RouteNote track we’re shining a light on this week is “Dancer,” with soulful vocals from Seyu that lie in beautiful layers over the menacing beat.


Want to see your music featured on our playlists? Sign up with RouteNote today to get your tracks online for free.

How COVID has affected the music industry

Following a streaming boom that brought the music industry back to growth for the first time in decades, the global pandemic has caused huge setbacks for many artists.

The last year has been difficult for everyone. No matter where or what industry people are in, the pandemic has had huge effects on the world. For us, the effect on the music industry has been impossible to ignore.

On the one hand, streams of music have risen with so many people spending more time at home and with less to do. We’ve even seen creativity flourish, with home creators like bedroom producers and garage bands having more time on their hands to write and record their masterpieces than ever. 

On the other hand, the live industry has been decimated and – in the new streaming economy we live in – that has had a devastating effect. Gigs, festivals, and tours around the world have been put on hold and we can’t escape the impact that has had on many artists.

Whilst some artists may have thrived from the growth of streams, there is a significant section of the music industry who have suffered. That’s what we’re going to look at today: how has the COVID-19 pandemic impacted artists, labels and others in the music industry in the last year and a half.

What impact has COVID had on the music industry?

Immediately before the pandemic hit and transformed the world, music was seeing a powerful resurgence after decades of decline. Following the horrendous effects of music piracy on global music revenues, streaming services stepped in to save the day and the past few years have seen global revenues climb for the first time in years.

The recorded music sector returned to growth in 2016 and and right up until 2020 was continuing to rise, growing an average of $4.5 billion each year between 2016 and 2019. Now MIDiA are predicting a 30% decline in revenue for 2020, the year the pandemic hit.

Whilst music streaming continued to thrive, growing to $10 billion in the U.S. last year, it was the effect on the rest of the industry that sadly saw the figures fall in a net decline. The live industry understandably plummeted and merchandise and sponsorships also saw a decline that couldn’t be offset by continued growth in music streaming revenues. 

Live music fell by a whopping 75% in 2020 with predictions saying that the gig economy won’t return until 2022 at the earliest. The usually symbiotic relationship of the music industry that has seen incredible growth in recent years has been hurt by this decline and that’s brought even more attention to streaming.

Streaming and live: Best friends separated

Whilst streaming has in many ways saved an industry on the brink, it’s not without its critics. There has been much discussion about whether the low per-play payouts are really fair to an artist, working on something like a performance royalty type rate as if songs were being played on the radio – though in reality they are listened to with on-demand access more closely related to digital downloads.

There is no debate that streaming a track earns less than purchasing a track. What streaming has managed to do is monetise the ubiquitous access to music that piracy offered listeners. That global access to music also provides a great boost to artists in many other ways.

Live music and streaming are considered to go hand in hand these days. Thanks to streaming, the discovery of an artist isn’t locked behind a $14 paywall (or however much CDs cost where you’re from); any listener can take the risk of listening to a new artist and potentially discovering a brand new favourite. Music discovery is the unofficial tagline of the streaming age: streaming accounting for 52% of new music discovery.

That discovery has many positive knock-on effects. Once an artist has been discovered they have a new fan who might like them enough to go the next step and buy their music once they know they enjoy it enough to keep. Hence why vinyl sales have surged back up in recent years alongside streaming, as listeners look to cherish the music they love in a more special way – even whilst it’s all available at their fingertips.

A bigger fanbase also leads to more dedicated listeners, which sells merchandise where huge money can be earned from artists. T-shirts, pencil cases, badges, and basically anything that can have a band logo added to it offers artists a huge potential profit margin – not to mention free advertising. 

Then there is the biggest through-sale for artists from streaming: concerts. Streaming builds up loyal fan bases and dedicated listeners leading to increased ticket sales and nowadays gigging often makes up the majority of an artist’s earnings. However, without the live industry’s earnings last year, artists have looked towards streaming as a primary source of earnings and the much-debated royalty rates have come into question more than before. 

This can be clearly seen by the fact that the UK government has had its largest inquiry into the streaming economy in the last year. This has been further compounded by the #brokenrecord trending discussion that has taken place whilst so many were at home and able to rally behind a cause. 

Whilst there are many artists making a living from streaming, there are many more who relied on the cohesive ecosystem that streaming had given birth to. With the return of live music we’ll hopefully see artists escaping the struggles of the last year again, but the conversations that a streaming industry without its profitable counterparts has given rise to won’t be forgotten.

The future of music streaming after COVID

Music streaming royalty rates have been discussed a lot in recent years and the results often seem to be that a majority are in favour of an increase. The question of raising royalty payouts isn’t simple though. 

Streaming services risk losing customers with price increases and fierce competition in their space means that the first to raise subscription prices will be facing cheaper opponents. Unfortunately, inflation means that a $9.99 subscription is worth 28% less in 2020 than it is 2008 (when Spotify had just launched). Change needs to be made, but services with a large company behind them like Apple Music and Amazon Music are unfortunately in a better position to increase payouts without raising prices to standalone services like Spotify and Deezer.

With the return of live music – though with many special measures still in place – the gig economy is coming back to the relief of many artists. This will allow streaming and live’s partnership in discovery and ticket sales to return, particularly as streaming has grown even further during the pandemic.

In fact, predictions for the future of music streaming are looking very bright. Analysts predict that there will be 697 million streaming subscribers by 2027, almost double the 362 million recorded in 2019. That figure doesn’t include the number of freemium listeners using music streaming services.

This will be driven largely by growth in emerging markets like China and India, which are predicted to account for 44% of subscribers by 2027. Streaming services are looking to these emerging markets for the future as uptake in listeners has begun to flatten in Western countries like the US and European territories. Most listeners likely to subscribe to digital services for music in these markets will already be using streaming services.

With a huge population and a streaming market that is only just beginning to blossom, these Asian markets represent a huge potential for growth. However, Western markets are currently worth more per user due to higher average revenues. Western markets will make up 76% of $45.5 billion streaming revenue in 2021, analysts say.

The future of music streaming is clearly in broadening the userbase across the entire world but more will need to be done as we progress in how much users are paying for these services and how much artists are receiving from them. The conversations are in motion and the pandemic has made the voices involved louder than ever. We now just wait with keen attention to see how the industry reacts.

Use this new royalties calculator to work out how much your music streams are worth

Image Credit: BMAT Music Innovators

A royalty calculator, supported by BMAT Music Innovators, gives artists an estimate of their earnings from music streaming – and also features a very addictive interactive game.

A song royalties calculator based on Spotify streams shines a light on how much artists earn from streams of their tracks.

The project, created by Gabi Ferraté and launched with the help of BMAT Music Innovators, wants to give artists and labels a more transparent look at how much they should be earning from streaming services. Fans can also see an estimate of the amount their favourite artists might make from their plays.

The important word here is “estimate” – it’s nearly impossible to know exactly how much a stream is worth, with a variety of factors affecting the outcome such as a listener’s location, what platform they use and their subscription tier. Record label cuts and distributor fees for artists also affect the amount.

This particular project is based on the stream rates from this article and on their current number of Spotify listeners.

Who has more monthly listeners – Tones and I or Rosalía? Tame Impala or P!nk? The royalty calculator project also features an interactive game where you pick which is the higher or lower of two artists by listeners. My winning streak was 13, which I was unreasonably pleased about.

Have a play with the royalties calculator here.


Streaming royalties are a hotly debated topic, especially since stay-at-home orders during the pandemic boosted the use of streaming services but cancelled gigs and tours and the revenue that comes with them. At RouteNote we’re serious about making sure independent artists and labels earn every cent they’re entitled to from streams of their music. That’s why our distribution is free, and always will be.

We’re constantly looking for new ways to give your music the biggest reach possible. As well as putting your music onto all the major streaming platforms around the world, we make sure your royalties are collected from YouTube streams, and get your songs onto Instagram and TikTok so your music can be heard across the web.


Get your music online for free with RouteNote today.

How to make money from YouTube

How do artists make money on YouTube? For starters, by putting music on YouTube for free with a digital music distributor.

YouTube is still the number one place for music discovery on the web – though rumour has it that TikTok may be catching up. If you’re wondering how to make money from music on YouTube, RouteNote offers several ways to get your music in front of the most ears and eyes possible, for free.

Let’s dive in.


How to make money from YouTube videos that feature your music

When you upload your music to RouteNote we make it easy for you to keep track of your music across the whole of YouTube, for free. Every time your track is used in a video on YouTube, Content ID will find it and direct the revenue back to you, the copyright holder, protecting your music rights.

With our Free distribution you keep 85% of revenue, with unlimited uploads to all of our partners from Spotify to Apple Music and other streaming services around the world at no extra charge.


Add your own music to YouTube Music

YouTube Music is YouTube’s very own music streaming service. When you upload your songs to RouteNote for free you can get your music on YouTube Music simply by selecting it from the list of partners. With each stream you’ll earn royalties.

At RouteNote we offer a Premium tier that lets you keep 100% of revenue for a small upfront and yearly cost. Whether you choose Free or Premium uploads, you’re never locked into a contract and can move between the two or leave for a different distributor at any time.

RouteNote covers 95% of the market – if you’re with another distributor who isn’t partnered with a certain store, you could use RouteNote to upload your music to just that platform, plugging the gap in your music coverage.


Don’t sleep on YouTube Sync licensing

Micro-sync royalties are sync royalties created when music is set to moving images. Sync royalties are an extra form of revenue outside of Content ID that RouteNote can collect on your behalf.

Content ID collects sound recording royalties whilst micro-sync royalties come from the composition of the song. RouteNote artists can apply here if your music is eligible for Content ID and you own composition rights to your tracks.


Join the RouteNote YouTube network

We’re an official YouTube partner and Multi-Channel Network, helping you manage your YouTube channel. You keep 100% ownership of your content. Find out more here.


Get your music online today with RouteNote – for free.

Is Twitch close to signing a licensing deal with publishers for music on Twitch?

In great news for artists, labels and streamers, Twitch is apparently nearing a licensing deal with NMPA to pay artists for music on Twitch streams.

Twitch has long been criticised for its lack of an effective music licensing system to direct revenue to the artist when copyright protected music is used in streams. But now Twitch and the US National Music Publishers’ Association are close to securing a music licensing agreement that could solve that problem.

According to Billboard, the parties are yet to sign on it, but a deal may be announced as soon as next week. Currently, as there’s no system like YouTube Content ID on Twitch, music is pulled from the platform after rights holders issue takedown orders. Streamers have to contact artists and labels for permission, use copyright-free music, or simply not use music at all in their streams.

Under the safe habour deals of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act, music can be uploaded provided it is removed at the rightsholder’s request. Twitch doesn’t have music licensing deals with any of the major labels, but does have deals with performing rights organisations like ASCAP and BMI.

NMPA have long argued that Twitch has the resources to pay artists fairly when their music is used in streams, considering it’s owned by the gigantic Amazon. Twitch has continually maintained that a solution is on the way. In place of a traditional licensing system Twitch introduced partnerships like Soundtrack, which gives users copyright-free music, and let artists track their stats through ForTunes.

Whilst Twitch has been stalling, the NMPA has been slapping DMCA takedown orders on unlicensed music on the platform, which has led to awkward instances like Metallica’s feed being switched out with a peaceful Zelda-esque soundtrack.

A deal would hopefully put an end the ongoing saga of music licensing on Twitch – and in favour of artists and for the streamers who use their music.


At RouteNote we cover every possible avenue so you can generate revenue from your music, for free. Once you upload your music to RouteNote distribution you can earn money from YouTube Content ID; on social media like Instagram; from streams on Spotify and all the major platforms around the world – all without being charged a penny. Find out more here and upload your music today.

SoundCloud’s new Fan-Powered Royalties increase artist payments by 500%

Image Credit: SoundCloud

A song by Portishead has earned the band six times more than it would have without the new “Fan-Powered” payment system, according to SoundCloud.

The streaming performance of a Portishead song is the first indicator of whether or not SoundCloud’s new fan-powered royalties work – and the platform says it’s a success for the artist. Plays of the track apparently earned Portishead six times more than what would have been generated under a pro-rata model.

Confused? Fan-powered royalties are SoundCloud’s new royalties system which means that payments go from users to the artists they’ve actually been listening to, as opposed to a big pool that is split according to percentages of plays – as in the case of the “pro-rata” system of the likes of Spotify.

Starting in April, SoundCloud rolled out fan-powered royalties to the 100,000 independent artists who monetise directly with SoundCloud. We explored the logistics of the new venture here.

Now SoundCloud says it has proof the system works for artists. The Portishead song in question is a cover of ABBA track “SOS,” and was exclusively released on SoundCloud at the beginning of July. The song had previously only existed as a music video.

Speaking to Pitchfork, SoundCloud said: “The model is tracking as expected and the Portishead stat is a strong confirmation of the model’s design – fan engagement is driving meaningful revenue.”

The statistics are based on streaming data that stretches under a month, and more details have not been revealed. SoundCloud said: “Full aggregation of market-live payout data is pending over the coming months.”

Supporters say that user-centric payment models like fan-powered royalties will boost revenue for artists below the superstar tier, which the results of “SOS” seem to confirm. If it works, fans of bands in genres outside the charts will know their money is going towards supporting their favourite artists, and more niche bands on streaming services would have the chance to break through the noise of the mainstream.


When you distribute your music with RouteNote we help you monetise your music on SoundCloud for free. Find out more here.

RouteNote’s New Music Releases 17th September 2021: Twelve belting tracks for you

We’re back again with yet another twelve new tracks released through RouteNote that are essential listening.

It’s that time of the week again where we tantalize your ears with the prospect of more great new music that has been distributed through RouteNote (for free). We’ve selected our favorites and added them to our in-house playlists.

The following tracks have been added to RouteNote’s exciting new Spotify playlists: Catalyst specializing in dance and chill house, Lo-Fi our chilled hip-hop relaxation playlist, Hooked with high tempo, motivational dance music, and the mellow treasure trove Tranquilize.


Jordan Schor – The Fool

Great vocals accompanied by anthemic and emotive beats, a great addition to our Hooked Playlist.


Hanzy – sex money feelings die

A dance track with a hook so large you could hang your coat off it, a fine addition to the Hooked playlist.


STRAYVER – Light

A slow burner that rewards the listener, as it cascades towards the culminating drop, you pulled into the energetic sounds of STRAYVER.


Gypsey Woman – Third Vibes

An anthemic dance track that is guaranteed to get you moving, a brilliant track for the Catalyst playlist.


Miscris – Boom Clap

A fun, energetic, dance track that is oozing in good vibes. Do yourself a favour and get this one on repeat via our Catalyst playlist.


Tommy Loude – Nostalgia

Get your fix of some deep house with Tommy Loude’s latest release ‘Nostalgia’. This truly brings the vibe to our Catalyst playlist.


Temple – Cool Summer

Peaceful, tranquil, and pleasant are just three words to describe Temple’s latest single ‘Cool Summer’. Now available on our LoFi playlist.


Flex – Without You LoFi Mix

A wonderful example of LoFi that uses subtle beats to create a warm atmosphere. Perfect for our LoFi playlist.


METAHESH – I’m Lonely But Not Inside

A subtly wonderful track that creates a real cinematic sonic aura, one to be enjoyed with earphones on a nighttime walk.


Slow June – Exeter II

A psychedelic and experimental piece of music that is wonderfully infectious, check it out now on the Tranquilize playlist.


Hijo Unico – Arquitectura

Get whisked away to sleepy land with this wonderfully relaxed release from Hijo Unico. Listen today on our Tranquilize playlist.


The Skating Party – Seventeen cages

Psychedelic art house indie pop to soothe your ears, thanks to The Skating Party. Check it out on our Tranquilize playlist.


Can I earn money from Spotify?

The answer is yes, and you can do so by distributing through RouteNote.

If you’re an independent musician, underground, or even established then you can generate royalties from your music, which means you will make money from your music. Thanks to the internet and services such as ours at RouteNote, you can distribute your music to a variety of platforms. Meaning that yes, you can earn money from Spotify, and you can do this for FREE with RouteNote

So how does RouteNote help artists make money? 

It’s extremely simple, you sign up for an account with RouteNote, which is free. You then upload your track, select where you want it distributed too, in this case, Spotify, upload the artwork, and then wait for approval from our friendly moderation teams. Once this receives approval it will then be distributed to your selected platforms. At RouteNote, we ensure that we put the artist first, so you keep all your rights to your art, at no point does RouteNote own your music. 

As an artist or label, all you need to do once you’ve been approved is sit back and wait for the royalties to trickle in. You will get to keep 85% of your royalties and there are no hidden fees or extra costs. Once you generate over $50 worth of royalties you will be able to cash out and reap the rewards of your creativity. 

Does RouteNote have a premium tier? 

Yes, it does! RouteNote also has a premium tier which requires a small one-time fee and an annual fee of $9.99. This allows you to keep 100% (yes you’re reading that right) of your royalties. Again, you will continue to own all your music and retain all your licensing and rights. 

Be sure to check out our service today and sign up to have your music heard across the globe and earn money during the process. We look forward to having you join our ever-growing roster of successful artists and labels.