Alternate Routes is a column from Flavorwire contributor and WFMU DJ Jesse Jarnow, in which he’ll explore music solely distributed outside the Big 3 of Spotify, iTunes, and Amazon.
The highest-profile new alternate route of 2015 is easily the celeb-endorsed hi-fi streaming service Tidal, presenting a would-be challenge to iTunes, Spotify, and Amazon with the glittering attraction of music unavailable elsewhere. The notion of an artist-owned platform that doubles as a label is enticing, though perhaps music is not what they meant when advertising “exclusive content and experiences.” Two months in, the $9.99/month site only offers two recordings that would obviously qualify as original releases in a proper discography, a pair of new live non-albums by Jay Z and Jack White — archived streams technically, with neither tracklists nor backing musician credits — captured weeks apart in Manhattan and Fargo, North Dakota, respectively. … Read More
Jay Z and Beyoncé have, supposedly, been secretly shelling out thousands of dollars to bail out incarcerated protesters in… Read More
Since last year, there’s been a rumor going around that Jay Z and Beyoncé are making a collaborative album… Read More
Celebrations amongst the Knowles-Carter family are in full swing this week. The relaunch of streaming subscription-based service … Read More
Yesterday, during the star-studded press conference announcing the relaunch of music streaming service Tidal, I was reminded of a figure cited by world-renowned economist Paul Krugman less than two weeks ago. On a panel about the future of music’s celebrity economy, alongside Win and Will Butler of Arcade Fire, Krugman noted that the bulk of music industry revenue is increasingly going to the kinds of artists who can fill arenas. And as of yesterday, it’s the superstars at the highest echelons of that list — your Beyoncés, your Coldplays, your Kanyes — who want to save the music industry for everyone. … Read More
There’s a moment towards the end of Rihanna’s game-changing performance of “Bitch Better Have My Money” at last night’s iHeartRadio Music Awards where Bad Girl Ri Ri struts towards the end of the stage, past the shrieking fans set in place for the show’s broadcast. Exuding wealth in a campy yet powerful way via kelly green fur and pleather, Rihanna reaches the end of the platform, where the stage meets banquet tables. She grins. The camera pans out. Nick Jonas applauds. … Read More