Yesterday, we wrote about some suspicious activity on the interwebs when some of our favourite artistes, ranging from chart-topping pop acts to DJs/producers simultaneously changing their Twitter as well as Facebook profile pics to a curious light blue colour. As it turned out, it was later revealed that there was a sound reason behind it.
A “sound” reason.
You see, Jay Z acquired a new high-fidelity streaming music service as part of a USD56 million dollar deal with the Scandinavian platform Aspiro. And in the past couple of hours, he officially announced the service with the backing of a host or artistes including Taylor Swift, Jack White, country star Jason Aldean, Madonna, and Daft Punk, just to name a few.
He also cut deals with a host of artistes — including those in the Roc Nation stable, such as Rihanna and Kanye West — to stream all of their content on the service.
Everyone, say hello to TIDAL, the first-ever artiste owned streaming service.
TIDAL uses a high-fidelity streaming protocol that boasts better sound quality. And while artistes, particularly Taylor Swift, have complained that rival service Spotify doesn’t fairly compensate artistes, insiders say TIDAL is “going to be Robin Hood, the first minority-owned, artist-friendly streaming service”.
As such, such a mind-blowingly awesome service is already seeing massive support from some of the world’s top artistes.
During an interview with the New York Times, Jay Z said:
This is a platform that’s owned by artistes. We are treating these people who really care about the music with the utmost respect.
Jay Z’s plan is the latest entry in an escalating battle over streaming music, which has become the industry’s fastest-growing revenue source but has also drawn criticism for its economic model.
Major record labels, as well as artistes like Taylor Swift, have also openly challenged the so-called freemium model advocated by Spotify, which offers free access to music as a way to lure customers to paying subscriptions.
At a brief but highly choreographed news conference in Manhattan, Jay Z stood alongside more than a dozen musicians identified as TIDAL’s owners. They included Rihanna, Kanye West, Madonna, Nicki Minaj, Jack White, Alicia Keys, the country singer Jason Aldean, the French dance duo Daft Punk (in signature robot costumes), members of Arcade Fire, and Beyoncé, Jay Z’s wife.
The stars stood side-by-side and signed an unspecified “declaration”.
Watch the official introductory TIDAL video here:
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