Music Industry Competition Watchdog Finds Alarming Trends Across The Sector - Forbes
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Music Industry Competition Watchdog Finds Alarming Trends Across The Sector - Forbes

MIAMI, FLORIDA - AUGUST 30: Bad Bunny performs live on stage during the Spotify ¡Viva Latino! Live … [+] on August 30, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by John Parra/Getty Images for Spotify)
U.K. competition watchdog, The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), stated that more than 80% of recorded music was at present listened to via streaming, more than 138 billion streams were played in the U.K. last year. Streaming has purportedly made the industry more challenging for artists with many making less revenue than before. British MPs are on record in calling for a “complete reset” of the industry as a result.
The report indicated that a very small minority of artists made substantial returns whilst the vast majority made minimal revenue.
CMA interim chief executive Sarah Cardell said: “For many artists, it is just as tough as it has always been - and many feel that they are not getting a fair deal.”
However, the report did note that the ease of access to music has increased, with musicians finding it much easier to share music and listeners having much fewer issues with accessing the art.
The damning report illuminated that the current streaming model from major players specifically benefits big stars and labels alone.
SOUTHWOLD, ENGLAND - JULY 17: Ed Sheeran performs on day 2 of Latitude Festival at Henham Park … [+] Estate on July 17, 2015 in Southwold, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
“A million streams per month would earn an artist only about £12,000 ($14,287) per year.” The report said.
Spotify is said to pay between £0.002 ($0.0024) and £0.0038 ($0.0045) per stream, and Apple Music is around £0.0059 ($0.0070). YouTube pays the least at about £0.00052 ($0.00062).
Perspective is also key in identifying the numerous issues. The initial streaming platform Rhapsody, founded in 2001, cost $9.99 a month. The prices are very much the same today, not adjusting for the huge amounts of inflation that have hit economies over the last 20 years.
Data from the Intellectual Property Office showed that only 1700 artists managed to make 1 million streams per year in the U.K.
Catherine Willcox, of UK country-music duo Ward Thomas, told BBC News: “Having been in the industry for more than a decade and achieving relative success - a number-one album, sold-out tours and many exciting festival spots - it may appear from the outside that we would be fairly comfortable financially.”
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 03: Catherine Ward Thomas and Lizzy Ward Thomas of UK country band Ward … [+] Thomas perform on stage at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire on April 3, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Joseph Okpako/WireImage)
“However, with the decline in album sales across the board and the rise in streaming, no-one is fully sure how they will sustain a creative career as the landscape of the industry changes so dramatically.”
“We are incredibly lucky to be able to do this full time for the moment,” Wilcox said, “but it is always very tenuous - and this is coming from two artists who profit from the masters, the performance rights and live shows.”
“This is even more difficult for songwriters who only get their writer’s cut.”
Zachary Schnall aka DJ Bander bridged a background in high finance, real estate stock investing with music to grow a media company and label, Bander Productions which has now achieved an 8-figure valuation.
He currently mentors and help artists and entrepreneurs build and develop their brands and companies utilizing his expertise in finance and economic/sales strategies.
As a composer and producer who built a strong production business by selling beats as well as composing for film, tv and original records for artists he’s seen the industry’s shift first-hand.
“The music business is a rough game. It’s highly competitive, similar to many other entertainment sectors, and cutting through now takes a very different strategy than what it used to.” He said.
DJ Bander - Music industry watchdog finds alarming trends across sector.
He added, “In both real estate and music there will be many people who suppress you and want to hold you back. Many frustrations and closed doors, the key is to always keep going and believe in your vision. Focus on bringing the best product forward that you can and conducting yourself with honor and honesty at all times.”
“It takes a lot of resilience, this is not an easy career and there is certainly space for new models to be developed to aid in helping artists make further revenue. There are some now but they just don’t get a lot of press.”
“We want our artists to have a wider presence and impact. It’s all about combining distribution with targeted engagement and growth tools, and that’s what we excel at for our clients - we help them reach new audiences around the world,” said Schnall.
On plans to change the lopsided dynamic in the music sector, he iterated, “In the next few years I’d like to both grow as a producer with more placements and charting opportunities but also as a bigger media mogul to help growing artists. Having a unique background in both music and finance I feel I can service a range of clients not only in the corporate and high finance space but in the entertainment and tech world.”
“When there are problems, there are opportunities and I want us to be able to find the solutions to create actual change.”



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