Streaming Saved Music. Artists Hate It. - The New York Times
To oversimplify, the big winners are the streaming services and the large record companies. The losers are the 99 percent of artists who aren’t at Beyoncé’s level of fame. And they’re angry about not sharing in the music industry’s success.
There’s a complicated and opaque formula that determines how the $10 monthly subscription for Spotify or Apple Music makes its way to artists. After those services take their cut, about $7 goes into a pot of money that gets split a bunch of ways — for the record labels, songwriters, music publishers, artists and others.
But Spotify is also nowhere close to its stated mission of “giving a million creative artists the opportunity to live off their art.” It likely has around seven million artists on its platform, and Spotify’s figures show that only about 13,000 of them generated $50,000 or more in payments last year. How can that number possibly get to a million?