March Industry Wrap-Up

March 28, 2019

By Kevin Cornell

Another month is coming to a close, and TuneCore is here to fill all you independent artists in on some of the headlines you may have missed.

Whether it’s music streaming, publishing, product updates, studies and reports, or op-eds, we’re rounding up some music industry must-reads for all of you looking to stay in touch with the business and advance a career!

Spotify India Hits a Major Milestone in its First Week

This month, Spotify finally launched in India. If you use TuneCore for distribution, you’ve previously relied on other DSPs like JioSaavn to reach new fans in that country. While the expansion was long discussed, it’s the 1 million unique listeners in one week that is really turning heads! Read more here.

South Korea Reaches Over 8 Million Music Subscribers

While we’re still very much in the age of tracking paid music service subscribers to follow the recorded music market, artists, fans and industry professionals will continue to keep these rates in mind when strategizing around new releases. South Korea’s music market doubled between 2013-17 – an impressive feat – and at the end of 2018 estimated around 8.5 million paying subscribers. Music Ally put together a profile of the country’s growth. Read more here.

BMI and ASCAP Issue a Joint Statement on ‘Consent Decrees’

Already in 2019 there’s been a lot of discussion what the implications are around the Music Modernization Act, and one of those topics has been the notion of ‘consent decrees’ – or the federal oversight of public performance royalty rates. This month BMI and ASCAP (two of the U.S.’s collection societies for these royalties) put out a joint statement that advises on a fair way to move forward and decries anything similar to compulsory licensing. Read more here.

U.S. Recorded Revenue Grows By Double Digits — For the Third Year in a Row

The RIAA revealed that U.S. revenues for recorded music jumped by 12% last year ($9.8bn). Good news for artists distributing their tunes across U.S. platforms, specifically those that stream; streaming accounts for 75% ($7.4bn) of this revenue, and it was up 30% from 2017. Read more here.

Innovation and the Future of Playlists

This month brought us an interesting op ed piece by Keith Jopling from MiDIA Research. While he claims we are “far from ‘peak playlist'”, Jopling acknowledges the general slowing of innovation in this field in the past year or two. The piece muses on platform tools to help curators reach wider audiences and how much context matters in the playlist space. A must-read for those artists strategizing playlist placements. Read more here.

Anghami Reaches 1 Million Paying Subscribers

TuneCore digital store partner Anghami celebrated reaching 1 million paying subscribers in March – congrats, friends! That’s not taking into consideration the 21 million monthly active user overall, but mobile partner subscription plans have helped the platform greatly. While it might not be a household name in the U.S., Anghami is a reminder of the soaring popularity of music streaming in regions like the Middle East, and also a reminder that indie artists can be marketing to these fans for discovery purposes. Read more here.

Independent Artists Make a Serious Dent in Streaming Market Share

The IFPI offered some insights into the current market share of global recorded music revenue – well worth reading into itself – and highlighted ‘Artists Direct’ (aka artists without a record label) as a big area of growth. While major labels took the majority of revenue 2018, with independent labels following that, artists who were not on record labels accounted for $0.6 billion in total revenue. Good work, everyone! Let this serve as a reminder to you artists who distributed their music to the world without the help of a label last year. Read more here.

YouTube Being Used For Music by 70% of 12-34 Year Olds in the U.S.

You read that correctly, folks. Edison Research and Triton Digital published a report this month that covers digital consumer behavior in the U.S. Among some big, interesting figures – 189 million people listneing to online-audio every month, for example – it’s that headline stat about YouTube that caught our eye. did a great a job at breaking the report down with some notes worth taking for indie artists. Read more here.

Tags: featuring industry news music business music industry