How Spotify and other Streaming Services Create Legal Artist Sweatshops

Online streaming and downloading services have changed my life. Unfortunately, they've also saddled me with a great deal of guilt. The foremost example of my emotionally distressed relationship with Internet technology is Spotify. Before discovering Spotify several years ago, I was stuck in what you might call a "musical quagmire." I didn't like what I heard on the radio, and because I went through a years-long phase of listening to only "Christian" music following my conversion, I lost track of … [Read more...]

My 10 Favorite 2012 Cultural Artifacts Not From 2012

Sometimes I feel kind of left out of all of those ‘best of the year lists’. Why? Thanks for asking. It’s because I am a total cultural laggard. I catch less than the average amount of new stuff coming out and that is usually because I am engrossed with old stuff.So I thought I'd share my list of the top things of 2012...that aren't really from 2012... I hope this list is liberating to those like me who spend their time channeling through the endless wealth of culture from before what John Cus … [Read more...]

What Does Spotify Really Mean for Musicians?

Damon Krukowski, of Galaxie 500 and Damon & Naomi fame, recently wrote an editorial for Pitchfork in which he explains how musical streaming services like Spotify and Pandora have benefited him as an artist. As it turns out, they haven't done a whole lot for him.My BMI royalty check arrived recently, reporting songwriting earnings from the first quarter of 2012, and I was glad to see that our music is being listened to via these services. Galaxie 500's "Tugboat", for example, was played … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: Spotify and the Culmination of a Century of Commercial Music

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.Spotify has been in business here in the United States since summer 2011. With nine months of legal music streaming under our belts, what do we have to say about this radical new way of listening to music? Are Spotify and other music streaming services just another passing trend in music listening? Is it a democratization of music or is it a … [Read more...]