May News From Our Store Partners

By Stefanie Flamm

You can finally put away your winter coat and grab your shades, because summer is upon us and a lot of exciting things are going on with our digital store partners.

  • Rhapsody launches virtual reality streaming of exclusive live performances.
  • Spotify updates their subscription plan to compete with Apple Music and Google Play.
  • Guvera launches 3.0, making their app an immersive music and entertainment hub for users around the world.
  • Chance the Rapper’s Coloring Book sets new records, Apple Music’s exclusivity reigns supreme.

Keep Reading!

Rhapsody VR changes the game for live concert streaming


Rhapsody just took a huge leap into the world of virtual reality with their new streaming service, Rhapsody VR. The service is the first of its kind, designed specifically for music and concentrating on exclusive, 360º coverage of live concerts.

While other streaming services are offering similar live concertrhapsody928 footage on their platforms, Rhapsody VR is unique in its interactive 360º coverage. Shot onstage, right beside the performers, the viewer can choose their own concert experience. And while the service is most compatible with Google Cardboard viewers, you can also watch on iOS or Android devices directly through the Rhapsody VR app. You can even sample the VR service on YouTube with TuneCore artist Talib Kweli’s “Get By”.

Rhapsody is excited about the future of VR, and expects that it will become increasingly popular in the music scene in years to come. “Music lovers around the world can experience a live concert for free from anywhere — the comfort of their home, their local watering hole, or wherever they have a cellular or WiFi connection,” Rhapsody shared in a statement from May 19th. “Musicians can share live performances with more fans… expanding their base of listeners and sharing more music with the world.”

With Rhapsody’s plan to release new content monthly, it will be exciting to see how VR influences the concert-going experience in the future.

Spotify goes head-to-head with Apple Music and Google Play with new family pricing model


Spotify has decided to give Apple Music and Google Play a run for their money when they announced their new Family Subscription Plan on May 23rd.

spotify300The pricing models for all three services are now identical, with individual accounts priced at $9.99/mo. and $14.99/mo. for up to six users. This is a big change from Spotify’s old pricing model, which could cost up to $29.99 for five users.

In the wake of millions of users subscribing to Apple Music and TiDAL for their exclusive content, matching the pricing models of these streaming services will be crucial to Spotify’s success.

The new family plan covers up to six users across the world, and existing accounts will remain intact and separate, keeping user content personal. Spotify is partnering this deal with an individual new-customer offer of $9.99 for 3 months of premium service.

It’s already looking like the new pricing will entice some fresh subscribers, and more subscribers may result in a higher per stream payout for independent artists.

Guvera launches their new platform, providing a comprehensive music experience for their users.


Guvera’s commitment has always been to connect brands and consumers through music and entertainment, and they took this mission one step further this month by introducing Guvera 3.0.

The re-launch of their service is marketed as a “new immersive music and entertainment platform” where brands can connect with consumers through Music Channels and Guvera’s new Social features.

The streaming service offers genre and mood-specific channels, as guvera1well as an opportunity for brands to offer exclusive content on their own channels. Channels can feature customized content including video, photos, blog content, and even competitions hosted by the brands themselves.

Guvera Social will offer brands an opportunity to connect with consumers through targeted updates, exclusive offers, and content sharing. With this service, brands can even make music recommendations to their consumers.

In their May 14th announcement, Guvera Head of Product, Robb Snell, is quoted, “…it’s all about discovery; discovery of a brand’s music recommendations, products and services all presented by a range of diverse content. Our Channels shine a spotlight on the underlying culture that drives artists and delivers a more immersive entertainment experience for our listeners to engage with the brands they love, when and how they want to.”

Chance the Rapper’s new album proves that Apple Music exclusivity is working for the store.


Chance the Rapper made history this month by releasing the first album to score a top 10 debut charting based solely on streaming.

apple-musicColoring Book has already collected over 57.3 million streams since its May 13th release date, ranking it #8 on the Billboard 200 album charts. Chance also made an impact on the Billboard Hot 100, with “No Problem (feat. Lil Wayne & 2 Chainz)” coming in at #86 and “Blessings” taking home #93 on the charts.

After Drake’s resounding success with his Apple Music-exclusive release of Views in April, Coloring Book is proving to be another huge win for the store. Apple Music has brought in over 2 million subscribers since February, undoubtedly related to the collective success of Views and Coloring Book. And while Coloring Book was made available on Spotify, Rhapsody, Deezer, TiDAL, and Google Play as of May 27th, the two-week exclusive was a big success for Apple Music.

TiDAL and Apple Music have both used exclusive streaming content to give their stores an edge, but the Billboard success of Coloring Book is a victory on the side of Apple Music.

SOUND BYTES

Billboard to Partner With Spotify

It was announced today that Billboard has named Spotify as their exclusive streaming partner. This will enable Spotify to be the official provider of “playback of more than 75 Billboard music charts”, as well as a new editorial feature focused on Spotify’s increasingly popular New Music Fridays playlist and several ‘Spotify-centric tallies.’

These three new Spotify powered song charts – to be featured on Billboard.com with a weekly cadence – include:

  • Viral 50 – This chart will mirror Spotify’s now-well-known US Viral 50 playlist.
  • Velocity – This chart will contain 30 editorially selected songs whose popularity is experiencing rapid growth relative to the previous week.
  • Rewind – This chart will feature five songs from each decade – 1960s-2000s – ranked by popularity and ‘weekly revival.’

On the other end of this partnership, 75+ Billboard charts will be available on Spotify via Billboard’s profile.

Some of you as artists may be wondering what this means why it matters. While not everyone involved with making music reads Billboard religiously in 2016, the publication has been one of the most historically influential resources for fans, artists and industry folks alike. As time has waned on, Billboard has adapted not only by offering charts that reflect the popularity of releases, but also by providing industry-minded insight, commentary and news content that have established them as a thought leader in the music space.

Now, to most of us, that’s not news. But when you think about the way we (musicians, journalists, industry people, and fans) have remained fixated on the future of music streaming, the announcement of Spotify – a leader in world of streaming globally – and Billboard partnering is pretty big stuff!

While the educated music fan already has their streaming preference, (many of them card-carrying Spotify Premium subscribers), this partnership further solidifies not only that streaming is here to stay, but that leaders like Spotify are going to continue to pave the way in making sure even more music fans can appreciate the benefits of it.

Read more about the Spotify/Billboard partnership here.

As the world of digital music continue to evolve, we’ll continue to keep you as informed!

July News From Our Store Partners

By Dwight Brown

Digital music stores are making changes that are turning the heat up this summer.

They’re growing, changing affiliations, adding territories and introducing new features that will affect artists who want their music downloaded and streamed—everywhere.

YouTube-logo-full_color

According to Music Business Worldwide, these days YouTube is the #1 music streaming platform in the UK and US and its market share is getting bigger and bigger and bigger… There may be a debate about whether YouTube is paying music rights-holders enough dough. But what isn’t in question is that the 10-year-old video-sharing website is living larger than Spotify and the rest of its competitors. With that kind of mojo, YouTube Music Key is an increasingly viable way for artists to make money.

8tracks_logo_blueIf you’re a TuneCore Artist whose music has been featured on 8tracks’ playlists through SoundCloud links, listen up. That duo has broken up. As of July 24th, no tracks can be added from SoundCloud. And an 8Tracks Blog article reports that starting September 30th SoundCloud tracks can no longer be streamed from existing 8tracks playlists. There are more details, but what’s important to you is that if you want your music to be added to 8Tracks playlists, so your tunes can be discovered, add your singles and albums to the 8Tracks store. With 8 million monthly internet radio listeners—one of the biggest audiences for independent music on the web—your songs should be on their playlists that are known for featuring no fewer than “8” tracks.

7digital

7digital, an international downloading and streaming service that has made inroads in Europe, North America, India, Australia and Latin America, is expanding its global reach to 40 countries in Africa through a deal with the South African collection society CAPASSO. Nigeria loves rap and hip-hop, and soul acts like Janelle Monáe and John Legend or in the top twenty on Nigeria iTunes Top 20 Songs list. Shazam Charts list former TuneCore Artist Silentó’s hit “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” in the top ten in South Africa. BuzzKenya.com says gospel music is the #1 genre in Kenya and rap music is closing in. The #1 hit on the Botswana iTunes Top 20 Songs is singer/songwriter James Bay’s Hold Back the River, followed by tunes from Jordan Sparks and country singer Kenny Rogers. Safe to say all kinds of music is getting downloaded and streamed in Africa these days. Yours can be too if you make sure you add your music to the 7Digital store.

spotifySpotify says its new Discover Weekly is the ultimate personalized playlist. These Monday morning, two-hour playlists are based on listeners’ personal tastes blended with music enjoyed by like-minded music fans. Deep cuts are played alongside a lot of discoveries, which means emerging TuneCore Artists have a new chance to get their music in front of a whole new audience. Back in the day friends passed mixtapes around. Discover Weekly mimics that feel, and is easy to access and listen to across all platforms and devices. It’s even available offline for that wish-I-didn’t-have-to-do-it, where-did-the-weekend-go Monday morning commute. “It’s just another manic Monday?” Not any more!

This summer, change is in the air! Take advantage.

If you’re a TuneCore Artist, go to your Store Manager Page to add stores or for more convenience add Store Automator and every time we add a new store we will add it to the releases you selected.

If you are not distributing your music through TuneCore yet, this summer is the perfect time to start.

New Store Alert! Get Discovered On 8tracks

Do your fans love making personal, themed playlists? 8tracks Internet radio is home to over 2 million playlists! 8tracks users from all over the world lovingly curate playlists and enjoy highly specific, relevant programming — spanning every imaginable style, activity or mood.

Boasting nearly 8 million monthly listeners, 8tracks is an exciting new store that TuneCore is now distributing to! Less repetition + a uniquely human touch = an unmatched opportunity for music discovery.

When you add 8tracks to your stores, you get…

  • The biggest audience for independent music on the web: 2/3 of 30 million hours streamed each month is independent content.
  • 3rd largest internet radio platform behind Pandora & iHeart, but younger listeners (50% 18-24) and more indie artists (2/3 indie).
  • User-generated radio means truly democratic programming; no barriers to your music being played and rising to the top.

Sound enticing? We thought so. Add your release to 8tracks today!

While you’re in your Store Manager, check what releases might be missing from other stores.