Tuesday, March 31, 2015

TIDAL relaunch thoughts

I used to spend well north of $20 a month on CDs. Now my CD purchases are largely confined to library sales and thrift shops, where $1 might buy four CDs. So I don't feel like $20 or even $35—what I pay for TIDAL, Google Play and Rhapsody combined—is too much. My preferred streaming service for a long time was MOG but it was destroyed when Dr. Dre bought it, adding features I didn't care for and getting rid of features I liked. Now another rap mogul, Jay-Z, has scooped up TIDAL and may be doing the same thing. I'm all for artists receiving due recompense for their worthwhile efforts, but I liked the way TIDAL was being curated by its Norwegian cohort, even if they didn't spout the artist-owned mantra. Now Jay-Z's big-shot lineup (Kanye, Daft Punk, Nikki Minaj, Madonna, Arcade Fire, Usher, Jack White, Beyoncé, Coldplay, Rihanna, Alicia Keys, Deadmau5, et al.) are hogging the What's New page on the site. I'm fearing for the fate of Blips and Blops, TIDAL Ten, TIDAL Tuesday, High Fidelity Vols. 1-?, et al. I'm not that interested in a one-week window for exclusive play of new music (giving artists shares in the company in exchange.) Or any of the "exclusive content" from the new TIDAL inner cabal. People are complaining that these are a bunch of rich people complaining about free streaming giving them the shaft. For sure to get attention you need to line up a bunch of über-celebs and have them all take turns signing something. Line up a bunch of worthy talents who receive checks for less than the postage stamp and you get zero attention.

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