Streaming and the Music Economy

The Nashville Scene has an annual “Stories to Watch” issue in which they cover.. well.. stories to watch for the year. For 2024, they turned their gaze on Streaming and the Music economy. Music editor Stephen Trageser interviewed me for my take on the topic, which you can see in the early January issue.

Here’s the most relevant excerpt:

Eades notes that, along with old-school tactics like getting fans on an email list, Bandcamp remains a significant part of YK’s approach. People know to come to Bandcamp to find music and the stuff that goes with it, so there is a built-in audience that a stand-alone web store can’t match. While those who purchase music downloads are in the minority, a band like rock veterans Tower Defense can see some income from printing up a cool T-shirt and bundling it with a download, as they did with their recent EP Never Mind the Menagerie. If Bandcamp does disappear, Eades is keeping an eye on up-and-coming alternatives including NinaSone and Ampwall

“I don’t know that I have a magic answer,” says Eades. “Our sort of North Star for everything is, ‘Just enjoy the work.’ Enjoy writing songs, recording songs, making videos, things that are sort of the creative part of it. Like, really let yourself enjoy that, and let that roll into the promotional part of it, because [that] can be such a slog.”

The last bit may sound a little eye-roll-y but I stand by the idea that focusing on getting paid, focusing on follower counts or streams is only going to end in disappointment. Focusing on the enjoyment of the songwriting and unleashing it into the world is the real joy. Sure, everyone wants giant spikes in listenership but those numbers don’t make a release good nor bad. It’s healthy to remember that.


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