This is a re-post of a contribution I recently wrote for the Bandzoogle blog. Bandzoogle is a great platform to build sophisticated websites for bands. While writing the below I realized how confusing streaming services music be for DIY musicians and how hard it can be to get their music onto those services.
Music streaming services are a great way for fans to access, consume and discover music on the Internet. They also offer bands and labels great ways to get discovered, build a fan-base, and, for some, there is even some money to be made. Unfortunately there are many misunderstandings about the different services on the Internet and this post will (hopefully) clear up some of the questions that Bandzoogle members, and other DIY musicians and indie labels might have.
So, what exactly are “streaming services”?
The “ownership” of music has become less relevant over the last years. Many people (myself included) don’t feel they need to own any CDs, vinyl records and mp3s if most music is available on the Internet to listen to. Ownership results in maintenance and responsibilities: we have to clean records and make sure they don’t get damaged. We have to back up our mp3 collection and make sure we keep the format up to date (who knows if mp3 as a format will still be relevant in five years ?).
A great alternative to the above is using a music streaming service to access music. The files are stored “in the cloud” and we only access them through the Internet as opposed to owning them. Typically, you will not pay every time you listen to a track but you will pay a subscription fee, or there will be advertising that you will be exposed to in order to listen to the music for free.
What is important to understand (and this is where it gets tricky) is that there are basically two types of services: “radio” and “on-demand” streaming. (more…)