Independent artists can now get their music on Spotify in Russia, Croatia, Ukraine, Serbia, Slovenia, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Moldova, Kosovo, Albania, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Bosnia & Hezegovina. Spotify have just launched in these 13 new territories…
It’s finished, the song is written, the pieces are recorded, the tracks are produced and the final mix down complete – what’s next? Creating, recording and finishing a track can feel like the whole process…
In light of the current situation and the struggles we’re facing, Spotify are helping fans and artists connect and raise money. Yesterday Spotify launched their Artist Fundraising Pick feature to Spotify for Artists. The brand…
RouteNote has one of the fastest growing YouTube Networks in the world. RouteNote accepts both Music specific and non-music specific YouTube channels into the network.
Channels receive the following:
* 85% Revenue Share by Default and possibility to go Higher
* Higher levels of monetization for youtube videos
* No lock-in forever – You can leave at any time
* Full Transparency – You can see all real-time stats in your YouTube.com Account
* MORE VIEWS: video promotion across our network
* Better rights management – through YouTube CID (if needed)
* Free Music and Image Database for creators
* Higher Income Opportunities with Sponsorships and Referral Program
Anyone can join the RouteNote YouTube Network now by logging into their RouteNote account and going to the YouTube page and adding their YouTube Channel details.
Legends in music production tools, Native Instruments are back with a new plugin that offers vast, studio-quality delay with five different flexible and deep delay modes.
Replika XT is the new effect plugin from Native Instruments (NI) that offers a load of advanced, high quality tools at an affordable price. It features five different delay modes, each modelled to provide “crisp digital repeats, analog warmth, and experimental textures”.
The customisation allows you to go deep into your mix and accurately control your delay sounds for the exact sound you’re going for. The interface is easy on the eyes but not lacking in features with knobs to control your mix and feedback, multiple knobs for additional effects and of course your delay parameters.
Replika XT features 5 different delay modes:
Modern – Delivers clean, precise, controllable repeats
Vintage Digital – Offers warm, crunchy repeats modelled after early samplers and digital delays
Analogue – Replicates the dark, hazy sound of analog bucket-brigade pedals
Tape – Provides the organic quality of famous tape echo units and the punchy, smooth sound of tape
Diffusion – Swirling reverberant echoes that no physical space can provide… Something entirely its own
Here’s what NI say about their new plugin:
Easy to repeat
Replika XT makes it easy to create sophisticated rhythms, widen your mix, or explore a universe of sound design possibilities. Use the pattern controls to quickly create rhythmic repeats that shift organically with the music. Dial in the perfect stereo image with panning for each delay and dry signal, or adjust ducking time to keep percussive hits tight – uncompromising control at a glance.
Seven steps to effection
Combine the delay modes with pristine effects to produce classic mixing tricks, and add shimmer, dimension, and motion to your music. Replika XT includes seven time-based and pitch effects to add to your repeats. Or turn the delay down and use them on their own.
Replika XT also features some custom presets from professional artists, including:
Roger Lyons (Lionrock, engineer/programmer for Kaiser Chiefs, New Order, and Ultravox)
Marcus Byrne (keyboards/programmer for Take That, ELO, Gary Barlow, and Annie Lennox)
Chris Shaw (producer/engineer for Bob Dylan, Public Enemy, Ween, SFA)
TOM and His Computer (Lulu Rouge)
Replika XT is available now for Windows and Mac and works with “any host / DAW as a plug in”. If you have the original Replika you can get a discounted upgrade for £44/$49/€49. Replika XT costs £89/$99/€99 with a free demo available from the NI site.
Amazon have launched a new ad-supported video service for creators to reach Amazon users, increasing competition between YouTube and parent company Google.
Amazon Video Direct is the new platform from tech giants Amazon and allows video uploads from anyone, who can then earn money from ads and Prime subscribers. As of yesterday users with an Amazon account can upload original or licensed videos of their own to the Video Direct. Once you’ve uploaded your video you can choose whether to make it available for free, through paywalls like Prime or other subscriptions, or make it available to rent and buy.
President of Samuel Goldwyn Films, Peter Goldwyn said: “We have the control to create unique distribution strategies that reflect the changing ways in which our audiences discover our films.” Whilst Andrea Carpenter from Mattel, Inc. said: “The upload and publishing process is easy and fast, and we can directly monitor our performance through our online dashboard.”
The optional royalty route is an interesting one and opens up more freedom for creators to dictate how their videos are presented to users. When uploaded to Video Direct videos will be made available in the US, UK, Germany, Austria, and Japan where Amazon Video is available. Videos will be streamable on any compatible device – Fire TV, smartphones, tablets, game consoles, Smart TVs and of course on computers.
Amazon are making their service transparent for creators so that uploaders can see minutes streamed, subscriber numbers, revenue projections, and a history of payments giving creators a chance to optimise their videos to suit their audience and work out the method of revenue generating that works best for them.
Amazon are also offering a giant prize draw every month as an incentive for uploaders. Every month Amazon will share out $1,000,000 between the Top 100 titles included with Prime through Amazon Video Direct. The bonus is based on customer engagement around the world will be open to any video titles included within Prime and comes as an addition to revenues earned traditionally.
From Friday the 13th this week the major online EDM store Beatport will be shut down in it’s entirety except for its download store after parent company SFX cancels its auction.
Beatport has become synonymous with online EDM and made itself one of the few renowned specialist music streaming sites, on top of it’s music store. As the company continually tried to branch beyond their parent company SFX Entertainment, who bought Beatport in 2013, fell into bankruptcy and decided to auction off the EDM specialising store.
After delays in the auction SFX are now cancelling the auction, deciding instead to strip Beatport’s service back to it’s roots to “invest in what is most important to our business and our customers”. Beatport made an official statement on their site that cites high ambitions with a lack of focus as the main factors holding them back.
Here is Beatport’s official statement in full:
Today we have an important update regarding the Beatport platform and the services we offer.
When Beatport was acquired three years ago, part of the vision was to create a broad digital platform for DJs to engage fans of electronic music wherever they may be.
The original Beatport Store and the Beatport brand became the foundation for this vision, upon which we added a streaming music service, mobile app, a video livestreaming platform, and a relaunched news and media property.
We have learned through this process however, that in our effort to be so many different things, we lost focus on bringing the best possible service and capabilities to our most loyal customers: the DJ community. As such, we have determined to invest in what is most important to our business and our customers, rather than adding yet another choice to a sea of streaming services.
This means we will be shutting down the Streaming service and mobile app, Beatport News, the Video livestreaming platform, and the Events section effective May 13, 2016. Additionally, while we plan to continue considering offers for Beatport, the previously detailed auction process will be suspended for now. We’d like to give our heartfelt thanks to all of the loyal listeners, readers, and viewers who have come to enjoy these services over the past year, as well as all the labels, artists, and promoters who have participated in them.
Going forward, we will refocus our attention and resources on our flagship business, the Beatport Store. We’ve already made noticeable improvements in site performance, with our most-used features (track, release, artist, and genre pages)running up to 51% faster.
For over 12 years, the Beatport Store has served DJs and the electronic music community. As a new generation of artists, performers, and sounds develop and grow, inspired by the leaders of today and the past, the Beatport Store will continue to be there to support the music and inspire the community.
— The Beatport Team
Beatport’s recent history has been a rocky one, with RouteNote revealing shocking royalty rates of 5% on their streaming service as well as freezing payments rightfully owed to artists as the company “went private”. Hopefully with this fresh start Beatport will return to the dedicated store for electronic artists that made it popular in the first place, without screwing over the artists that made it again.
Warner Music Group are the first major label to sign a deal with MQA to “significantly increase music fans’ access to hi-resolution music globally”.
Master quality audio isn’t new in itself but hi-res audio files have always taken up loads of memory, something that definitely isn’t compatible with streaming. MQA brings hi-res, master quality audio files in packages small enough to sustainably stream or download.
Now Warner Music Group (WMG) have made a world first by being the first major record label to sign a deal with the hi-resolution audio distributors. This will allows all of Warners extensive music catalogue to go through MQA to provide pristine quality tracks to their partners. So far partners are limited to a few specialist services like Onkyo, however with this deal we could see MQA files expanding to mainstream stores like Spotify and iTunes.
MQA creator, Bob Stuart said: “This collaboration is a giant step forward for MQA and music fans everywhere. We have been working tirelessly to ensure labels, studios, artists, services, and playback partners understand the potential of our technology and the responses have been overwhelming. MQA is about bringing the most authentic sound to music lovers all over the world and WMG is our first major partner to help drive this mission forward.”
Chairman and CEO of WMG’s Atlantic Records, Craig Kallman added: “The digital music era has been all about convenience. It is fantastic that we can listen to virtually and song, anywhere, any time. In that process, however, convenience has trumped sound quality, and we have gotten further away from the sound that artists work so hard to create. MQA makes hi-resolution music easy to stream or download to any device.
“Music fans will love it when they hear it, and WMG is thrilled to be partnering with MQA to take the next step in bringing hi-resolution music to consumers across the globe.”
Though you might assume this increased competition would harm Spotify it turns out it’s having the opposite effect. A vice president at Spotify, Jonathan Forster told Reuters: “It’s great that Apple is in the game. They are definitely raising the profile of streaming. It is hard to build an industry on your own.
“Since Apple Music started we’ve been growing quicker and adding more users than before. It would be terrible if we were just taking each other’s users or to learn there was just a ceiling of 100 million users – I don’t think that is the case.”
Forster went on to say that he didn’t believe the current streaming landscape was sustainable with multiple services. He said: “My internet history would tell me that there’s probably not going to be that many significant players, and then maybe smaller niche cases. It’s a hard business”
Spotify have faced criticism from the industry for its freemium model, which some artists and labels say devalues music. Spotify have remained firm on their decision to have a free platform with optional paid subscriptions for offline play, no ads and other extras. With their ever-increasing user-base Forster reported that conversion rates to Spotify Premium were still holding strong, with 25-30% of users converting to paid subscriptions.
Forster spoke on their increased growth, saying: “That should have a negative effect on the conversion rate but it hasn’t. — I think that people have really woken up to the opportunity of streaming. We can see that it is just the beginning. We’ve never grown quicker than we have.”
SoundCloud’s subscription service is available for French listeners from today to offer offline listening, access to even more tracks, and no ads.
SoundCloud Go launched their first ever subscription offering (for listeners) in the US in March to success, and support from the industry. Now exactly one week after SoundCloud Go launched in the UK and Ireland it’s extending across the Channel and into France.
France are the fourth market to get Go around the world with more European countries expected to be its next launch targets. SoundCloud Go offers mobile users the ability to save tracks for offline listening, removes ads between tracks and gives you access to an extended song catalogue of over 125 million tracks. For example Kanye West made his recent album The Life of Pablo available for SoundCloud Go listeners.
In their release statement, SoundCloud said: “Today’s launch is part of our ongoing commitment to building an ecosystem where creators have opportunities to be paid for the work they share. So beginning today, the free SoundCloud listening experience in France will now be supported by advertising. When you hear an ad, artists, get paid.”
This development has been incredibly important to SoundCloud’s survival. It’s undeniable that SoundCloud is a massive online music platform that is important to many artists, but for years it remained a free service and contained a lot of copyright material, especially due to it’s massive community of remixers. This came to a head last year as labels and artists grew more aware of these infringements, leading to SoundCloud signing deals with major labels including Universal Music.
Now with label deals and a revenue-generating platform artists and labels can get rightly paid for their music or use of their music on the site. Free users need not worry however, as their service remains a place to listen, discover, share, and upload for free with the option to pay for extras and no ads – like a community driven Spotify.
French SoundCloud users can start a 30-day free trial of SoundCloud Go today from here, or through the updated app. After your free 30 days a Go subscription costs €9.99 or if you sign up on iOS €12.99.
The UKs capital London has elected a new mayor in Sadiq Khan, and his support extends to the music community of London and the UK.
Sadiq Khan’s election as London mayor has promised a reinvigorated emphasis on the music scene in the UK’s capital city. Khan has some big plans including the production of a Cultural Infrastructure Plan by 2030.
Khan said of music and art in London: “There are few places on earth that can rival our city for it’s arts and culture. Our arts and culture help make London an amazing city to live in, and are a big draw to people from all over the world – both tourists and those looking to the city to work and set up businesses.”
Khan’s promise extend to the protection of music venues that face “increasing risks” including a rule that forces developments next to music venues have to meet appropriate soundproofing requirements. Additionally the new Mayor of London has agreed to set up ‘Creative Enterprise Zones’, workspaces dedicated for artists with live-in space.
UK Music, a lobbying/campaign group that represents the music industry in the UK has welcomed the new mayor, saying: “UK Music knows that Sadiq is a music fan. That is one of the reasons we are delighted that Londoners have put their trust in him as our new Mayor. London has made the right choice.”
Chief executive at UK Music, Jo Dipple said: “I’ve written to the new mayor to congratulate him and offer the support of UK Music and its members. UK Music needs a mayor who understands and cares about issues affecting music in London. Sadiq’s manifesto does just that. I look forward to working with him and his team to deliver policies good enough for London, the capital of music.”
Spotify have 12 new shows on the way covering pinnacle moments in music, the clashing of producers and a mockumentary starring Tim Robbins.
Earlier this year in January Spotify launched a new section on their iOS and Android apps called ‘Shows’. Spotify Shows hosts a load of networks including Comedy Central, MTV, Adult Swim, BBC, Vice, Ted Talks, NBC and more. Each network features a bunch of shows which range from full series like Robot Chicken, to snippets from TV programmes and feature length documentaries.
Now Spotify are working on 12 new and original shows that focus on music and pop culture. These new shows will range from a few minutes long to 15 minutes and feature help from actor Tim Robbins and the co-founder of Def Jam Records Russell Simmons.
A couple of the shows have been revealed: ‘Landmark’ is a docu-series that covers various significant or “landmark” moments in music history. So far there are two episodes shot about Metallica, and one about Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds album.
The other show announced is “Rush Hour”, produced by Russell Simmons’ All Def Digital company. Rush Hour brings together two Hip-Hop acts who have to come together and create performance in limited time to audiences. Bloomberg reported that in the pilot of the show cameras were mainly on the audience, suggesting a focus on response rather than performance.
Meanwhile Academy Award winning actor Tim Robbins will take part in a series which follows his attempts to become the next big thing in dance music… Unfortunately it’s a mockumentary, or fortunately.
The shows are being led by Spotify’s new content partnerships chief. Tom Calderone, who joined in March, said: “Music will always be the most important, but our audience likes us and wants more from us. We have to figure out a second act, and I think it will come out of video. The idea is to make sure users know they can come here for something other than playlists.”
Before joining Spotify Calderone worked for 17 years at Viacom Inc. where he made TV stars out of pop singers Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake. He also played a part in turning rappers Flavor Flav and Snoop Dogg into reality television stars. Now he’s trying to bring that experience of melding music and video to Spotify by leading their new original shows.
Apparently Calderone’s plans for Spotify Shows includes two stages. The coming together of music and programmes is part of phase 1. Calderone is also talking to artists in how they can use video with new album releases to complement their new shows. Then in phase 2 they will take the music element away to cement shows as it’s own entity with a series of comedy and animated shows. Calderone plans to visit Los Angeles and London in the next month to discuss partners for shows.
Calderone already has the help of ex-boss Van Toffler, who left his management of MTV, VH1, and CMT to form his own production company: Gunpowder & Sky. The company will produce an animated series called “Drawn & Recorded” focusing on notable artists and places in history. The show will be narrated by Grammy winner T-Bone Burnett.
Toffler appears to be highly enthusiastic of Spotify’s direction in video production, saying that streamers like Spotify “need to be more than a library of music. What we did at MTV was create genre shows, unique performance shows and narratives behind the music – literally ‘Behind the Music’. This is a blueprint.”
At the moment there’s no release date for Spotify’s upcoming shows but be sure to find out about it here on the RouteNote blog when any news is revealed.
In its first week of availability Views was streamed an incredible 245.1 million times in the US alone. This overtakes and then laps Justin Biebers previous first week streaming record of just over 100 million on his album Purpose. To exacerbate how successful Views launch has been, it has been streaming exclusively on Apple Music besides it’s singles – so yes, he earned the majority of all those streams using just one streaming service.
In Stream Equivalent Albums (SEA – 1500 streams representing an album) Drake sold 163,392 units. With the addition of his 850,000 actual album sales that places him safely over a million sales in just a week. This represents the best sales week for any male artist in the past 3 years, since Justin Timberlake’s album in 2013.
Back to streaming though – these stats prove two things: First that Drake is a massively successful artist and probably doesn’t need to worry about ending back at the bottom. Second is how massive music streaming actually is, with his album being streamed so much that it made up roughly 1/5 of his actual album sales in SEA. Had it been released on other streaming services we can all assume the figures would be even more outstanding, but it represents the power of the streaming platform.