June News From Our Store Partners

By Stefanie Flamm

The days are longer, the sun is brighter, and our digital store partners are gearing up for a summer’s worth of big updates:

  • Amazon Music plans to release a new streaming service that will compete against Spotify and Apple Music
  • US music mogul Guy Oseary, famous for representing Madonna and Nicki Minaj, has become an investor and partner of Saavn
  • Apple Music responds to negative customer reviews with a total overhaul of their interface
  • Deezer uses a simple, fun advertising strategy and sees their new user numbers triple

Our store partners are working hard to improve customer experience, offer new products, and make it easier for your fans to listen to your music.

Amazon Music is stepping into the streaming arena with a new service planned to rival Apple Music, Spotify, and TIDAL

Pretty soon, Apple Music, Spotify, et al. will see another competitor in the ring of digital music streaming. A source informed Reuters earlier this month that Amazon Music is planning to offer a standalone streaming service for, in keeping with what has become an industry standard, $9.99 per month. The service is set to launch early this fall.

2. amazon-music-logoCurrently, Amazon offers a curated catalogue of music for
streaming, available only to Amazon Prime members. The new 
service will be available outside of the Prime membership for the monthly cost of $9.99, and will offer a larger catalogue of music for streaming.

Amazon has been making huge strides in its competition with other streaming services outside of just music. Prime Instant Video is in direct competition with Netflix and Hulu, and Amazon recently launched a customer-supported video service called Amazon Video Direct which is a similar service to YouTube. It’s therefore something of a natural progression for the store to invest in a music streaming service to compete with Spotify, TIDAL, and Apple Music. The service is also likely to complement the Amazon Echo device released last year.

We’re excited to check out the service when it launches!

Saavn receives an investment from a major music industry executive. What does it mean for the service?

Legendary music executive Guy Oseary has joined Saavn as an investor and partner, as of earlier this month.

Oseary started his career at 19 years old as an A&R rep for Maverick Records. He quickly climbed through the ranks, now acting as partner and CEO for Maverick, which represents artists like Nicki Minaj, The Weeknd, Paul McCartney, and Lil Wayne.

8. Saavn-Logo-Horizontal-Green-1000Saavn isn’t Oseary’s first go at tech investment. He joined with Ashton Kutcher and Ronald Burkle to form A-Grade Investments, which has helped finance Airbnb, Spotify, SoundCloud, Shazam, and Uber. In the case of Saavn, however, this is a personal venture and is not associated with A-Grade.

Saavn CEO and Co-Founder Rishi Malhotra is excited to have Gil on the Saavn executive team. “Guy has incredible instincts across entertainment and media. He understands that we are not building the Spotify or Pandora of India. We are building Saavn in India, for India, and we’re thrilled to work with him to build the company for the long term.”

Perhaps, to quote the 1942 movie Casablanca, “this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”

Apple Music gets a makeover to improve their customer experience.

Between their first year anniversary coming around the corner and their recent announcement that Apple Music is now up to 15 million subscribers, it’s an exciting time to be a part of the Apple Music community.

Another big piece of news from the Apple Music front was apple-musicannounced at their Worldwide Developers Conference that took place between June 13th-17th in San Francisco. Senior Vice President Eddy Cue showed off the brand new Apple Music interface, designed to better employ the feedback received from customers over the last year. The new version of Apple Music is designed to centralize the listening experience and create a fluid transition between streaming and downloaded music.

Since the June 2015 launch of Apple Music, Apple has struggled to consolidate the pre-existing iTunes app with their new streaming service. Both listening platforms were combined into the Music app, but the interface has notably been difficult to navigate, and in rare cases has resulted in thousands of lost audio files. This new overhaul is designed to not only better harmonize iTunes and Apple Music, but it’s also making the interface easier to maneuver.

Cue detailed that the new version of Apple Music will have a mostly black-and-white interface, making the colorful album artwork pop, as well as more detailed song information and a “Recently Added” section to check in on what’s been recently downloaded or saved on the device. The new updates will also affect the desktop OS, with Apple Music sharing available directly through iMessage.

The newly designed Apple Music should be integrated with iOS 10, coming this fall, and we can’t wait to test it out.

Deezer uses their enormous registration increase to revamp their advertising strategy and help close the gap between themselves and Spotify.

Deezer took a leap last year with their first attempt at TV advertising, and it’s paid off big time. The streaming service, available in over 180 countries, has seen a 300 percent growth in daily registrations within the last year. With that momentum, they’re taking on a new strategy with a fresh set of video advertisements.

Deezer-logoDeezer’s first campaign approach is simple: what rhymes with Deezer? The commercials are straightforward and fun, and the bright colors, subtle humor, and “sounds like you” tagline give the store’s branding a friendly and approachable vibe that inspires you to check out the service. Their new campaign takes the silly but candid sentiment that brought them so much success in 2015, only now doubling-down its own absurdity. They even went for a one-two punch by adding puppies, because who doesn’t love a dog jamming out to dance music? The new “flow my music” tagline refers to their recommendation tool, but also implies an easy-to-use interface.

“Our first foray we saw a 300 percent increase in daily registrations. With those results in mind, having demonstrated TV is a success and we’re keen to unlock more of that opportunity. With this new campaign we’re broadening the offering to more audiences and more media channels,” said Christian Harris, managing director for the UK & Ireland.

As Deezer grows in strength, they hope to close the gap between themselves and Spotify. With a campaign this naturally enticing and their consequential success over the last year, it looks like Deezer is quickly becoming a huge asset to artists around the world.

Deezer is available in almost every territory, and listeners can apply for the beta in the United States.


April News From Our Store Partners

By Dwight Brown

It’s springtime and that change you feel in the air is progress being made by our digital store partners.

  • Tidal grows by leaps and bounds, becomes the top music app.
  • Apple Music offers exclusive Drake release, creates a new patent.
  • Saavn launches original programming, teams with a U.S. tech firm.
  • Spotify partners with Billboard to give music fans a new experience.

Read on.

Nascent Tidal grows faster than the speed of sound, becomes #1 US music app store.

Tidal’s subscription base has grown from 540,000 since its purchase in March 2015 to a whopping three million+ according to Music Business World.

Credit Tidal’s quick rise to headline-grabbing premiers. Rihanna’s hittidal logo album Anti debuted exclusively for streaming on Tidal, as did Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo (per Rainnews.com) which was also available for purchase on his own website, during its initial release. Rainnews.com goes on to argue that West “Redefined albums in the streaming age” when Yeezy continued to tinker with the album after it started streaming, even adding a track after its release.

Beyoncé’s latest effort Lemonade, a “visual album” including 12 songs and videos, also premiered on Tidal. Additionally, as Prince is on everyone’s mind and in their thoughts these days, TIDAL benefited from being the only streaming service to host his full catalogue of around 270 songs.

With so much popular music premiering exclusively for streaming on its platform, it’s no wonder “TIDAL is currently (as of April 24, 2016) the most popular music app on the US App Store – above both Pandora and Spotify,” reports Music Business World.

Drake is faithful to Apple Music. Apple’s new technology can clean up dirty lyrics.

apple-musicNot to be outdone in the exclusive premiere department, a Music Business World article confirms that Drake’s new album, Views (Aka ‘Views From The 6’), scheduled for release on Friday, April 29, is going to be an Apple Music streaming exclusive. As you can tell, Drake is excited:

“Thank you Apple Music – always, man; thank you to Jimmy [Iovine] and thank you to everybody who supported the two singles that we dropped, Pop Style and One Dance.”

Remember, Hotline Bling, with its popular video that was financed by Apple, premiered on Apple Music and took a month to make the rounds to other services.

Looks like “windowing,” the choice to selectively distribute music through certain key channels, at selected times, is here to stay.

Apple is making inroads in other areas too, reports Billboard. It’s been granted a patent for a technology that can automatically scan streamed songs and edit out offending lyrics, making the tracks “clean,” or more family-friendly. 

Saavn ventures into the worlds of original programming and mobile payments.  

An article in Forbes.com announced this month the launch of Saavn8. Saavn-Logo-Horizontal-Green-1000 Original Programming, in partnership with India’s radio icon Neelesh Misra, podcast network Indus Vox Media and digital media brand Arré.

“With this launch, we are turning Saavn from a music-only product to a millennial entertainment platform with the best music experience, groundbreaking original programming, and a true home for artists and creators,” said Saavn co-founder and CEO Rishi Malhotra.

Saavn is also teaming up with the U.S. based FinTech (financial technology) company Mozido to make bill paying, financial services and exclusive offers a whole lot easier for its 18 million users. According to India Times, the music-streaming app currently in 196 countries and territories inked a multi-year agreement with the U.S based mobile payments company. “Saavn Pro offers a compelling value to its users with unlimited downloads, removal of advertising and higher quality audio files. We will explore loyalty programs,” said Michael Liberty, founder of Mozido.

Spotify and Billboard are making beautiful music together.

spotifyBillboard announced it has tapped Spotify to be its exclusive streaming partner for 2016. The deal tasks the streaming service with powering the playback of music listed in more than 75 Billboard music charts, as well as providing a weekly New Music Fridays editorial feature and three additional Spotify-centric charts.

These three new Spotify-driven charts will be published weekly on Billboard.

  • The Viral 50. Songs with a high volume of social and sharing activity, like TuneCore artists Nipsey Hussle & YG‘s “F— Donald Trump”, Area21’s “Spaceships” and Emir Taha’s “Ultralight Beam.”
  • The 30-track Velocity Chart. Songs that are blowing up on Spotify, like TuneCore artists M-City J.R.’s “Addicted to my Ex.”
  • The Spotify Rewind tally. Highlights five songs for each decade from the 1960s through the 2000s.

Remember that exclusive Apple Music scored with Drake? Turns out, even though his new music has been appearing on Apple Music first, Drake is still the most streamed artist on Spotify via PlayStation, which is an increasingly popular way for fans to listen to Spotify’s music.

Meanwhile, Rihanna is now the biggest artist overall on Spotify with 31.3M active fans worldwide. That’s despite being a shareholder in Tidal and offering that service first dibs on her music.

It’s springtime and our store partners are growing and finding innovative ways to showcase artists’ music.


TuneCore Artists — Add your music to new stores today.

Not a TuneCore Artists yet? — Join TuneCore today.

December News From Our Store Partners

By Dwight Brown

Good news. That’s what our store partners are giving artists this holiday season, as we look back on 2015 and forward to 2016.

Apple Music turns the streaming game into a competitive race. The Australian music service Guvera adds territories. Spotify may change the way artists can release music. And Saavn is branching out as it hits a new pinnacle.

A lot’s going on this time of year…

Pandora vs. Spotify vs. Apple Music: sprint or marathon?

Apple MusicA recent article on The Verge follows a heated race between Pandora (78M users and rapid growth), Spotify (75M and rapid growth) and Apple Music (6.5M new growth). “Unless it [Apple] can find something that will get users to pay for Apple Music en masse, it’s going to be stuck chasing Spotify and Pandora.”

Wired thinks otherwise, “Apple doesn’t need Apple Music to win, which is why it will. With a huge pile of cash and massive profits, Apple is under little pressure to show quick returns … Its size, its resources, its visibility—give the company a serious edge in streaming music.” And DigitalTrends quotes music business analyst Mark Mulligan’s report that says, “the music streaming service [Apple Music] will reach 20 million subscribers by the end of 2016. Is this a race between the Tortoise and the Hares?

More Apple Music News: Since early December, iTunes and Apple Music have listed two separate charts in all territories, so if artists have their music on both services, and it charts, now they’re doubling their visibility.  Apple Music is coming to Android. Apple Music is the exclusive distributor of the official concert film of Taylor Swift’s 1989 tour, reports Music Business Worldwide.

15 million users, expanding to U.S. and courting an IPO

Guvera is an international ad supported and subscription (ad-free) based music streaming service from Australia. It offers users access to millions of songs and expertly curated playlists from both local and international artists and labels. Now that it has reached 15 million users, Music Week reports it has an eye on jumping into the United States market.

GuveraThis is after Guvera launched in India and, according to Billboard, distinguished itself from other foreign streaming services by putting a bigger emphasis on securing streaming rights to popular Bollywood music. Said Guvera Chief Executive Darren Herft, “We’re the only [streaming service] in the world that has label agreements with labels like Sony on top of the biggest Bollywood label in India as well.” To meet its ambitious expansion goals, it [Guvera] has confirmed a $100 million “pre-IPO round” of funding. Guvera is currently in 17 countries—and counting.

Can Spotify’s Freemium survive? Who rocked Spotify in 2015?

SpotifyIs Spotify thinking about changing its practice of simultaneously making artists’ music available to both its paid subscription service (20M+ users) and “freemium” service (80M users)? Music Business World says, “…demands from significant players in the industry for Spotify to drop its ‘everything freemium’ rule are getting louder.” And MBW points out there is a precedent, “Earlier this year, a new track from UK rock band Muse ended up exclusively on the paid-for level of Spotify.” End of an era? New beginning? Just conjecture? Artists who want to “window” release their music will want to stay tuned to this story. So what is “windowing?” First, transactional sales (downloads, CDs, vinyl); Second, subscription streaming; Later, free streaming.

More News: TuneCore Artist Band Low Cut Connie and their song “Boozophilia” made the Spotify 2015 White House Presidential Playlist. Where do former TuneCore Artists go? To the top of Spotify’s 2015 Biggest Playlist Chart! Drake is the world’s most streamed artist of 2015, with over 1.8 billion streams. A new Spotify feature can create a list of local concerts for users based on their Spotify tastes.

$100M in funding. 18 million users. Music is just the beginning.

An article in Music Business Worldwide reports news about India’s leading streaming service, Saavn has secured $100 million in a new funding round led by Tiger Global Management – as the streaming competition in India heats up.” Apple Music and Guvera have put roots down in India; Spotify has yet to launch there.

SaavnSaavn views music streaming as a strong base, especially when it comes to its use on mobile phones (Androids), where music is driving data consumption and redefining mobile advertising. “We are building the best-in-class mobile entertainment ecosystem, with music as the foundation,” states Rishi Malhotra, CEO and co-founder of Saavn. Even more ambitiously, a Billboard article reveals that Saavn reaches 18M monthly users. And MBW profiled Saavn’s Gaurav Wadhwa, the new Vice President of Entertainment and Original Content, who will oversee development of Saavn’s moves into new genres, sports, comedy and other entertainment channels.

In 2015 TuneCore’s digital partners found new ways to keep a competitive edge that will help them and TuneCore artists grow in 2016.


August News From Our Store Partners

By Dwight Brown

As summer ends and days at the shore dwindle, several digital music partners are making waves you won’t see at the beach.  

Digital music stores are doing their best to live up to expectations, embrace radio play, take advantage of music fans’ incessant love of streaming and stake out their niche territory in an ever expanding music market. See how…

1. itunes-logo-png-transparent-8Based on numbers from MusicWatch, (a company dedicated to marketing research and industry analysis for the music and entertainment industry), Billboard Magazine thinks it’s possible that Apple Music could become a top-three subscription service (behind Spotify and Deezer) and could quickly reach number two. They came to that conclusion after a difference of opinion between MusicWatch and Apple Music spilled over into the pages of their magazine.

A MusicWatch 5,000-person survey produced findings that don’t jive with Apple Music’s assertions, especially regarding the number of Apple Music users. MusicWatch: 8.6 million.  Apple Music: 11 million. Turns out the MusicWatch’s figures were only for the U.S. and Apple Music’s figures are global, hence the disparate figures. The article delves into the habits of Apple Music users who are not giving up on Spotify as they toy with the new Apple streaming service. Considering Billboard’s prediction, artists who make sure their tunes are in Apple Music are preparing themselves for the future.

 rdioA MusicBusinessWorldWide article has made the observation that Apple Music isn’t the only streaming music service to boast a traditional radio element. Rdio has introduced nearly 500 broadcast radio stations into its US offering, driven by US-based network Cumulus. Popular stations that will now be featured on Rdio include Indianapolis’s 93.9 The Beat, LA’s 95.5 KLOS, Nashville’s 95.5 NASH Icon, New York’s NASH FM 94.7, San Francisco’s KFOG and more. Additional radio stations will launch later this year in the US and in a number of other international markets. Though solid user numbers are yet to be confirmed, it’s believed that Rdio offers streaming across more than 35 million songs in 85 countries.

Bollywood movies aren’t the only8. Saavn-Logo-Horizontal-Green-1000 universally liked form of entertainment in India. Streaming is getting a lot of love too. According to the Times of India, based on a study conducted by market research firm JuxtSmartMandate, listening to music online is the third most preferred activity of urban internet users in the country. (If you’re curious how emails and social media stack up, read the article.) As many as 97.4 million people in urban India listen to music online which is close to 63% of the 168 million total urban internet users in the country and around 75% of this traffic comes from mobile phones. With a total app download of 25.6 million, and an active user base of 14.1 million users, the digital distributor saavn is a co-market leader.

2. amazon-music-logoMusic streaming in the UK has almost doubled over the last 12 months; hence Amazon has entered into the UK streaming market with Prime Music, a service available to Amazon Prime customers as part of their annual £79 subscription. The service provides access to one million+ songs and about 500 specially created playlists. So what’s the big deal, if Apple or Spotify offer more than 30 million tracks? Let’s call it a unique holistic approach. Paul Firth, head of music for Amazon UK, told the BBC News, “Being the one place where you can buy CDs and vinyl, you can buy downloads or you can stream – I think that’s the best place to be right now.” For artists, that means their music can be sold in any format with Amazon Music. Soup to nuts music sales? Great for music fans. Even better for artists.   

Summer beach days are concluding.  But digital music sales opportunities never die.

If you’re a TuneCore Artist, our store partners want your music. Add your new music today! 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! Saavn Gets Your Music Heard All Over India

Here at TuneCore, we’re always exploring new ways to get our Artists’ music heard in new places by new fans. Part of that means aligning and partnering with great music services and stores. Today, we’re psyched to announce that we’ve added saavn (South Asian Audio Visual Network) to our list of digital music partners!

Music consumption in India continues to grow. In fact, TuneCore Artist Earnings grew 174% in India from 2013-14! Get into India’s booming music streaming market today:

  • Rap, rock, pop, jazz… all kinds of music is popular on saavn!
  • Get your music discovered by 11,000,000+ monthly active users.
  • saavn is based in India, but streamed around the world!

Your Store Manager makes it easy to add your releases to saavn or any other stores. Just point and click to get more of your music heard by more people worldwide! Go ahead and add it today.