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The Black Keys, who pulled their recent album, El Camino, off of Spotify, have recently commented on their reasons for doing so. In an interview, drummer Patrick Carney discusses the band’s wariness toward music streaming.
Spotify became hugely popular as a music streaming and sharing platform almost overnight. Although the company saw great success originally, it appears that their luck is beginning to change. About a month ago, over 200 indie labels pulled all of their music from Spotify after a study was released which argued that free music streaming has a negative effect on record sales.
The Black Keys, along with other big bands like Coldplay, have been choosing to opt out of the music streaming phenomenon because it is not equipped to support bands as much as record sales royalties would. The theory is, if your album is not available for online stream, listeners will be more prone to buy the album. The debate is still raging, with some musicians embracing social media and online streaming as a way to better connect with their fans.
The Black Keys’ Patrick Carney offered this insight:
“It’s becoming more popular, but it still isn’t at a point where you’re able to replace royalties from record sales with royalties from streams… I think for unknown bands and smaller bands, it’s a really good thing to kind of get yourself out there… for a band that makes a living selling music, it’s not at a point to be feasible for us.”
Only time will tell whether this new era of online streaming will be nipped at the bud or if record labels and musicians will be forced to adjust to this growing demand for free music.
Included below is the interview where Patrick Carney talks about The Black Keys’ decision to withdraw El Camino from Spotify.