RIAA now says `total music revenue grew 18% to $5.4 billion in the first half of 2019, with streaming music accounting for 80% of industry revenues`.

That is the same RIAA that said music streaming will kill the industry, (along with cassette tapes, blank CDs & MP3s).

@MatejLach ...And how much of that revenue went to musicians?

(My guess: very little, because streaming pays notoriously poorly.)

@artsyhonker Yeah, also because of the way the publishing agreements tend to be written, where the music publisher gets something close to 80% of that revenue, since in their words, they took considerable risk, (uploading a file to Spotify).

@MatejLach Indeed. I recommend Bandcamp if you want to support musicians more directly!

@artsyhonker So I used to stream, but then I got into higher-end audio and so started building a personal music servers to have FLAC quality source of music, which, luckily Bandcamp is the go-to place for, so am glad to hear it actually matters.

@artsyhonker @MatejLach totally a bandcamp supporter but some albums are still associated with labels (marked in a black box in the upper left corner). I’ve emailed #bandcamp and a few artists to see how that works without much luck 🤷‍♂️. On the upside, the band Geoda emailed me directly to say thanks and ask my opinion about their music (it’s Awesome). Had a nice chat with them.

@sconlan @MatejLach *nod* I imagine that the contractual arrangements between the label and the musician are, well, between the label and the musician.

Labels aren't inherently evil and there is a lot of admin musicians might like to outsource. But having the *option* of going DIY can be super important.

@artsyhonker @MatejLach notably, musicians themselves tend to blame streaming services instead of copyright holders.

@isagalaev @MatejLach It's often difficult to access the streaming Ng services without signing away copyright, that's how this works.

Realistically, most musicians that make a living from music do so by touring, teaching, other live in-person stuff (e.g. music therapy). The "long tail" of recordings not only doesn't make most of us rich, it also doesn't make most of us *solvent*.

@artsyhonker @MatejLach oh that's interesting… I've had an impression that during the MTV era it was the other way around — most money came from selling (and re-selling) records and broadcasting. Is that right? Or was it always biased towards performances?

@isagalaev @MatejLach The musicians that you *saw on MTV* might have made a living that way.

That isn't an accurate sample, though. Most musicians didn't get that far.

@isagalaev @MatejLach And even then -- most of the big names did tours, yes?

The only musician I can call to mind who made a living off recordings and recordings alone was Glenn Gould, and he's... definitely an outlier. Very specialist. Hated performing. Reclusive, even.

@isagalaev @MatejLach Now, I'm *not* a music historian, so I could be wrong, here.

But I *am* a working musician, and if I thought "get signed with a record company and get good streaming coverage" was a good way to make an actual living, I would have done that by now.

It is definitely in the interests of record companies and other non-musician rights-holders, though, for people to *think* that that system works.

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