New Study Finds Music Streamers Are Still Buying Music

A new study has found that music streamers are still buying music, despite claims that say music streaming is killing music sales.

The study conducted by the British Phonograph Industry (BPI) and the Entertainment Retailers Association shows that streaming could actually be responsible for a lot of the music that does sell. Although this study centred on statistics for the UK we can assume that it remains relevant globally.

According to the report 13% of the paying streamers asked felt that since streaming music their spending on CD’s had increased. Even more surprisingly 19% of paying streamers said that since the introduction of streaming services their vinyl purchases had increased. The most significant statistic however shows 37% of paying streamers admitting they had increased their spending on digital downloads.

Overall Percentages Channel Popularity

The report shows that the majority (89%) of those who digitally purchased music wanted to support the artists. Physical buyers were more likely to go for CD’s and Vinyl records for decorative purposes and to show their friends.

66% of those surveyed said that they listened to and obtained music from various sources of streaming, CD’s and Vinyl records rather than listening exclusively through one format. Reportedly 33% said that they would prefer an all-inclusive platform where they could stream content, and purchase CD’s.

The report also showed some interesting statistics such as male listeners were more likely to pay for streaming and the age group most likely to use multiple platforms were the 35-54 age group. It also shows that nearly a third of listeners will listen to music for more than 3 hours with males and younger audiences more likely to listen for longer.

Hours listening to music

For those wondering about the demographics used we can assure you it was a fair survey featuring 28% ages 16-34, 39% ages 35-54 and 33% ages 55-and-up. 53% of those surveyed were male and all social classes were included ranging between 19%-30% for each.

So streaming isn’t killing music purchases, and could even be re-invigorating them. So when you hear a naysayer of music streaming, show them this report.

Spotify Launch Party Mixes Including New Diplo Mix

New to Spotify’s entourage of 2015 features is ‘Party’ a selection of playlists “mixed by us tuned by you”.

2015 has been an ambitious year for Spotify, in the face of competition from Apple Music and Tidal they have saved face with an assortment of great new features. Yesterday Spotify unveiled their newest addition, and probably the last of the year, Party mode.

Using ‘Party’ Spotify will automatically create a playlist of tracks that are beat-matched and blend into one another for an endless mix that sounds smooth and professional. Eliminating all the awkward pauses and transitions between tracks, making this a perfect tool for parties… maybe that’s where they got the name.

Spotify Party mixes

With Party mode you can select the genre and then set the tone with a slider choice of three different moods from chilled to pumped. You can select from a range of genres including Reggaeton Riddims, Electro Blowout, Holiday Party, R&B Jams and many more.

Spotify Party also premieres an exclusive mix from Diplo with an 120-track playlist, which should be enough to satiate users until Spotify add more original mixes which they have promised are coming soon.

Unfortunately for all you desktop users the feature is currently only on iOS and Android. You can access Party mixes by downloading or updating your Spotify app.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MM3uj9zFy6M?rel=0&w=640&h=360]

Rdio Closing December 22nd, Allowing You To Transfer Your Music Collection

Rdio has confirmed it will shut down on December 22nd after it’s acquisition by Pandora, however Rdio are letting you download your music collection to import and view.

After the news that Pandora would be acquiring and shutting down Rdio it has been confirmed that Rdio will officially shut down on the 22nd December. However Rdio have set up a function so that you can download your collection of music, favourites and playlists in a number of formats to transfer to other streaming services.

On their website Rdio say:

Rdio is being acquired, and the service is shutting down worldwide on December 22. We’re excited to bring great music experiences to even more listeners in the future as part of the Pandora team.

We’re honored to have connected you with the music you love. We know you want to find a home for that music, so we’re providing ways for you to take it with you.

Rdio then gives you a short overview of your account’s activity showing when you joined, your first listened track, most played track, most played album and your total listening time. In the middle of the page is a button that takes you to the page where you can download all your music into a zip file.

Your Rdio collection will come in four file formats that work with third-party importing tools, spreadsheets, plain text viewers and data-interchange format “recommended for pros”.  More good news that might make up for losing Rdio is that Spotify have unveiled their Rdio to Spotify importer so you can easily import your library into Spotify.

Spotify Rdio importer

Once your library’s transferred your playlists will be added to Spotify, artists you liked on Rdio will be followed on Spotify and saved tracks and albums will be imported. As we say farewell to Rdio at least we can find comfort in our old music stockpiles from the retiring music streaming service.

Export your Rdio collection: www.rdio.com/farewell/instructions

Import Rdio to Spotify: import.spotify.com/rdio

Serato DJ Free 1.8.1 Update Out now

Popular DJ software Serato DJ have released an update to version 1.8.1 that brings a range of bug fixes and maintenance support.

Serato recently released 1.8 which brought some great new features to the software including Key Detection, Key Display, plug and play support, an update to Pitch ‘n Time DJ and more.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8r0Wew7-sbg?rel=0&w=640&h=360]

Serato’s Head of Product Strategy, Nick Maclaren says: “Stability and performance is the most important thing for every DJ. It’s great to follow up on the recent feature heavy 1.8 release with a nice stability release that’s full of bug fixes and El Capitan support.”

Here are all of the fixes, optimisations and changes in Serato DJ 1.8.1:

Bug Fixes

  • In HID mode the CDJ cue buttons can jump to incorrect cue point markers
  • With Pitch N’ Time engaged performing a cue point can cause audio artefacts
  • Record timer fault after recording reaches 100 mins
  • Multi channel AIFF files causing crash when loaded to deck
  • Tracks flagged as corrupt can stop deck playback in autoplay
  • MIDI initialisation not working for some controls on OSA devices
  • Full Screen mode in El Capitan not working correctly
  • Half/double BPM edit causing hang
  • Potential hang on library import
  • Dragging and dropping outside of SDJ not working correctly
  • Unable to scroll and organise crate lists correctly
  • Album art is not displaying on supported CDJs
  • Hang on startup for some users
  • Recording meter showing max volume at all times
  • On instant double waveforms are not displaying correctly on some controller screens
  • GUI popups not layering correctly causing visual artefacts
  • GUI stalls when rescanning ID3 tags
  • Analyse files button does not light up when tracks are dragged over the top of it
  • Song time text position incorrect
  • Potential hang when using censor actions during Flip playback
  • Selecting track with unloaded album art can cause all CDJ HID album art to not display
  • Slicer status bar message for beatgrid displaying even when slicer is not enabled
  • Dock Icon bouncing on OSX during startup of SDJ
  • Autoplay stops playback after it skips a missing file
  • Potential crash when editing beatgrids
  • Scope view alignment issues when using SDJ in French and Spanish languages
  • Track info disappears in History Panel after track is removed from the library
  • Translation alignment issues

Other Changes

  • A range of performance, graphical and memory optimisations
  • Fixes for potential crashes, hangs and memory leaks
  • Bundled the El Capitan specific drivers for the Pioneer DJM 850, DJM 900 Nexus, DJM 900 SRT, DDJ-SZ and DJM S9 drivers into Serato DJ

Known Issues

  • When using CDJ HID mode with OSX El Capitan the CDJ900-Nexus and XDJ-1000 players will not be recognised if they are powered on after connecting to your machine via USB, please power your CDJ units before connecting USB, we are investigating this issue.
  • With Pitch N’ Time engaged performing a cue point can cause audio artefacts in certain situations, we are working on this issue and hope to have a fix in a build soon.
  • After updating your machine OS to 10.11 we advise restarting it before attempting to use Serato DJ, it is also highly likely you will need to do another restart after installing any 10.11 specific drivers for your hardware (if your hardware requires it)
  • If your CDJ is not detected using El Capitan and HID mode there is a known issue and we are working on it – in the meantime hotplugging your primary device while the CDJs are connected will detect them.

BBC Radio 1’s Head of Music Is Leaving For Spotify

George Ergatoudis has worked with the BBC for 18 years and is leaving his 10 year position as head of music for BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra for a new role at Spotify.

After almost two decades at the BBC George Ergatoudis is leaving his esteemed position to take up a newly created role at Spotify. At Spotify Ergatoudis will be leading the UK team for in-house music curation strategy and content programming.

Speaking of his time at the Beeb Ergatoudis said: “It’s been a privilege to have played a key part in the journey of the world’s greatest music radio station over the last 10 years. In that time, Radio 1 has successfully moved into a new era of visual and shareable content, helping to drive new young audiences to the BBC.

Now I’m ready for the next chapter in my career as I take on responsibility for leading Spotify’s in-house music curation strategy and content programming for the UK. I can’t wait to get started.”

Before becoming head of music for the BBC’s most successful radio station, Ergatoudis was managing BBC Radio 1Xtra’s music policy for five years and helped develop the careers of UK stars like Dizzee Rascal, Ms Dynamite and Wiley. Also listed at number seven in The Guardian’s 2011 Music Power 100 list, Ergatoudis clearly knows what he’s doing.

Controller of BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra, Ben Cooper said: “Over the past decade, George has been a key part of Radio 1’s discovery of new music for young audiences and has continued to support British artists, giving them a platform for success.

“He has built a strong team at Radio 1 and 1Xtra with excellent contacts across the industry. We would like to thank him for all his hard work and wish him all the very best for the future.”

Clash Magazine Returning With 100th Issue

After a year hiatus from their physical magazine Clash are returning next February with issue 100.

Last November Clash released issue 99 of their monthly popular music and fashion magazine. After running for over 10 years Clash decided to take a hiatus and decide where to go next with the 100th issue of their magazine upon them.

Clash continued running online but left many questioning what was happening, was it the end for Clash magazine? If you’ve made it this far into the article then you’ll know the answer is no. After a year of digital exclusivity Clash broke the news that they’re coming back. With its return Clash will also now be published bi-monthly whereas before it was monthly.

Reportedly Clash are working with a number of partners to help their re-launch, including a ‘premium advertising partnership’ with Vice Digital Network for the commercial side of things. Clash are also to bring a new app to accompany their website and relaunched physical magazine.

Co-founder and editor-in-chief of Clash, Simon Harper said: “Reaching 100 issues in today’s print climate is quite a triumph, especially for an independent publication such as Clash. We’ve taken time to evolve and refine the Clash brand, and are very excited about this new chapter and our visions for 2016 and beyond.”

Planning Director at Vice, Devina Seth added: “Clash have quickly established themselves as a premium publisher across the Vice Digital Network. Their premium content is in demand amongst millennial audiences which works in favour of brands and them as a media owner.”

Issue 100 of Clash will feature “four different and distinct cover stars” (as yet un-announced). Clash say the issue “celebrates the past, present and future of Clash, with a retrospective look through our photography vaults and a countdown of our favourite albums from Clash’s lifetime.”

You can pre-order a copy of Clash issue 100 here.

Google Play Music Partner With The Brit Awards 2016

Google Play Music have officially joined The Brit Awards for the second year as their streaming and download partner.

Google have partnered with The Brit Awards again to provide free downloads and streams of the live performances after they take place at the awards ceremony. All downloads will be free as Google Play Music front the charge and donate it to The Brit Trust and Nordoff Robbins, a music therapy charity.

Director of Fundraising and Communications at Nordoff Robbins, Jo Carter said: “We are delighted that the BPI has chosen us as their official charity partner for this year’s Brit Awards. It is arguably the main highlight of the musical calendar in the UK and the fact that they’re donating proceeds from downloads of what are always such epic performances on the night, provides a huge opportunity for crucial funds to be raised for Nordoff Robbins, which will enable us to reach even more vulnerable and isolated people and deliver music therapy to those who desperately need our support.”

As a partner for music last year, Google Play Music managed to raise over £250,000 for partnered charities such as War Child and The Brit Trust. This reportedly raised more many than ever before in the Brit Awards charitable records.

Head of EMEA Music Partner Management at Google Play Music, Azi Eftekhari said: “We are thrilled to once again be the official download and streaming partner for The Brit Awards 2016. As the UK’s most prestigious music event, and one that is getting increasing global recognition, we are very proud to be continuing this partnership.

“Thanks to the generosity of the artists, managers, labels and publishers who participated, we broke records with our donations to War Child and the Brit Trust last year. Our goal will be to go even further this year.”

Chief Executive of Brit Awards and BPI, Geoff Taylor also chimed in on the partnership: “We are delighted to have Google Play Music on board again following the massive success of last year’s activity, which was great news not just for fans of the Awards who were able to download or stream audio of their favourite live performances, but did so much to raise much-needed funds and profile for War Child and The Brit Trust.

“We are hoping for even greater digital engagement this year to raise an ever larger sum for this year’s nominated charity Nordoff Robbins in this, their 40th anniversary year. The money raised will make a huge difference to their music therapy programme alongside the music education work of The Brit Trust.”

The Brit Awards 2016 will take place on the 24th February 2016, performances will be available on Google Play Music shortly after.

How Did Streaming Services Do In 2015?

Billboard have released a “scorecard” that pits the pros, cons and secret weapons of various streaming service against each other to see how they fared in the highly competitive year of 2015.

Included in Billboard’s “Streaming Scorecard” are front-runners Spotify, newcomers Tidal and Apple Music, surprise success Amazon Music and then America’s current favourite Pandora. The scorecard covers Apple Music’s success with it’s global, 24-7 online radio Beats 1, specifically the head and face of Beats 1, ex-BBC DJ Zane Lowe.

It also covers the surprisingly large subscriber base for Amazon Prime Music as well as Spotify’s pole position in users and value. The chart then closes with an ‘outlook’ for each streaming service , in the form of weather metaphors… fun!

Take a look for yourself:

Billboard's Streaming Scorecard

The Vintage Style nOb Virtually Controls Almost Anything

nOb is a questionably titled knob that can control nearly any interface feature that uses the mouse on computers.

nOb emulates a Human Interface Device so that you can easily edit any alterable parameters straight out of the box. You can use the nOb to raise and lower volume levels, scroll pages, edit music and video and lots more.

To use the nOb you need to point your mouse at the parameter you want to alter and then using the multi function scroll knob you can twist and tap the vintage style device to easily and accurately edit interface elements. You can use the nOb on webpages, computer programs and software and almost any sliders, scrollbars, knobs or draggable value indicators.

One of the most striking features of the nOb is it’s design with a triangular, hand-crafted, hardwood mahogany enclosure with a big solid, aluminium knob on the front for that retro-radio look. It also features two flick switches which can reverse direction and jump between screen elements. The knob and switches are also touch-sensitive for extra functionality, so you can double tap the knob to undo/redo actions, tap the right switch to switch operation modes and more.

nOb also delivers precise and real-time data such as rotation or touch events using open serial protocol interface so that developers can experiment with it deeper. With nOb’s open serial interface, developers can create programs and perfect their functionality.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKK5BJJmwhk?rel=0&w=640&h=360]

nOb is currently on Kickstarter and reached 50% of their goal in just 5 days. If you want to support the nOb or get one for yourself when they’re released then head to: www.kickstarter.com/projects/330654825/nob-one-knob-controls-it-all.

Traktor Creators, Native Instruments, Release FLESH

Native Instrument’s FLESH is “a fun and innovative performance synth that turns anything you feed it into an electronic symphony”.

FLESH is a new REAKTOR Instrument created by producer, musician and inventor Tim Exile. FLESH lets you upload up to 12 samples which will be analysed by FLESH so that the sound can be transformed into curves and triggers that are sent to four audio engines for re-synthesising new sonic material. These four engines work specifically on changing the sonic character of sounds, transforming samples into monophonic sequence or lead, chords, or sub-bass frequencies.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8aztdTJB9qo?rel=0&w=640&h=360]

FLESH augments your music to form dynamic basslines, riffing melodies, throbbing pads, and more. The instrument is intended to provide producers with a way to enhance their live sets or to experiment with fresh sounds for original productions.

Creator Tim Exile said: “The concept for FLESH came to me when touring with my custom looping beatmaking, and improvising instrument that I built in REAKTOR. I was missing a way to make harmonic and melodic material in a live, improvised scenario. I wanted something that would empower me to create expressive and dynamic sounds which fit in perfectly with whatever was going on at the time.”

FLESH has been designed so that it’s easy-to-use and fun to create new sounds from your original samples whilst retaining the original samples qualities. You can also edit and alter the sounds with an effects section and a modulation page.

FLESH is the first REAKTOR Instrument designed from the ground up to get the most out of the KOMPLETE KONTROL S-Series keyboards. Color-coded control octaves on Light Guide make it easy to see keyswitches – even on a dark stage. FLESH also uses the Light Guide to provide tight visual feedback, highlighting sounds and samples, and sequenced harmonies. Thanks to Native Map, parameters are perfectly pre-mapped to the eight control knobs on the KOMPLETE KONTROL keyboards. Plus, you can save presets – including samples – and recall them in real time.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ClOIRMTwSL8?rel=0&w=480&h=360]