Curated Reads

This page organizes the newsletter into specific topics with additional sources to check out.

2023 Music Streaming Platform Review

Amazon Music (1/11/2023); Apple Music (1/25/2023); YouTube (2/8/2023); Spotify (2/22/2023); Deezer, Pandora, SiriusXM, and Tidal (3/8/2023); Tencent Music, Kakao Entertainment, Anghami, and Gaana (3/22/2023)
Additional Sources: 1. Ad-Supported Music Streaming is Broken. - David Turner, 2. '"You can touch your music"' - Andrew Thompson  

Music Streaming Platform Histories  

Tencent (7/22/2020); Audiomack (9/18/2019) Deezer (8/28/2019)
Additional sources: 1. Selling Digital Music, Formatting Culture by Jeremy Wade Phillips,  2. Platform Capitalism - Nick Srnicek, 3. 'SoundCloud and Bandcamp as Alternative Music Platforms' - David Hesmondhalgh, Ellis Jones, Andreas Rauh

Major Record Label Histories  

History of Warner Music Group (1/12/2022), History of Sony Music Entertainment (1/26/2022), History of Universal Music Group (2/9/2022)
Additional Sources: 1. Appetite for Self-Destruction by Steve Knopper, 2.  Fortune’s Fool by Fred Goodman 3. Hit Men: Power Brokers and Fast Money Inside the Music Business by Fredric Dannen

The Relationship Between Social Media & the Record Industry

Social Media Doesn’t Want Music (4/19/2023), TikTok Cannot Afford the Music Industry (12/14/2022), The Unheard Battle Over Social Media Licensing (5/18/2022), TikTok's Advertising Niche (6/24/2020) TikTok's History (2/27/2019); Triller (2/5/2020)
Additional sources: 1. Playing to the Crowd by Nancy Bahm, 2. DIY Music and Politics of Social Media - Ellis Jones, 3. 'Making Sense of Metrics in the Music Industries' - Nancy Baym, Raj Bhargava, Fernando Diaz, David Hesmondhalgh, Elena Maris, Christopher J. Persaud  

On the Big Green Monster: Spotify

Spotify's Stock Hit Bottom. What's Next? (5/4/2022) Spotify's Great Podcast Bet (6/9/2021) Spotify’s Perfectly Calculated ‘Wrapped’ Campaigns (11/20/2019), Why Spotify Will Struggle in India (12/5/2018)
Additional sources: 1. 'The Spotify Teardown', 2. 'Unfree Agents'  - The Baffler, 3. Revenue Streams - The New Yorker  

Song Rights Acquisition Histories  

Is the Music Catalog Sales Boom Over? (7/13/2022); History of Hipgnosis (10/14/2020); Brief History of Publishing Consolidation (5/27/2020)
Additional sources: 1. 'Mass Hipgnosis' / 'The Masters Own You' - The Baffler, 2. How Wall Street Stormed the Music Business / Blackstone-Backed Song Rights Machine Suffers Growing Pains - The Financial Times  

Music "Piracy" Histories

How Digital Piracy Shaped Modern Music (Part 1) (10/5/2022) / Part 2 (10/19/2022),  The Persistent Lie About Music Piracy (10/9/2019); RIAA's History of Suing Music Fans (8/21/2019)
Additional sources: 1. 'All The Rave' by Joseph Karl Mann, 2. Democracy of Sound - Alex Sayf Cummings, 3. The Death & Life of the Music Industry in the Digital Age - Jim Rogers, 4. 'The Effect of File Sharing on Record Sales: An Empirical Analysis'  by Felix Oberholzer Gee and Koleman Strumpf

The United Kingdom Parliamentary Record Industry Inquiry  

Part 3 (8/4/2021); Part 2 (5/5/2021); Part 1 (2/3/2021)
Additional sources: 1. Economics of Music Streaming - The Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, 2. Music and streaming Market study update - Competition and Markets Authority; 3. 'Music Industry Reacts to UK Streaming Economics Inquiry Report' - Music Ally

Does the Copyright Royalty Board Now Care About Musicians? (8/17/2022); History of the CRB (5/19/2021); Pandora's Anti-Songwriter Past (5/1/2019)
Additional sources: 1. Official Government Website, 2. 'Fine-Tuning: Why Extending the Public Performance Right in Sound Recordings Would Require Changes for the Copyright Royalty Board' - The George Washington Law Review

Sites 2 Check Out

Ampled - A co-op platform for fans to support musicians. (I'm on the Board of Ampled)  
Art and Labor - New York City's only art and labor podcast.
Buy Music Club - Make and share playlists with Bandcamp tracks.  
Cryptophasia - A newsletter by legendary music journo twins Jenn and Liz Pelly.
Dweller - A black-led Brooklyn techno festival and a dance music archival resource.
Interdependence - Mat Dryhurst and Holly Herndon musing tech, music, and other big worded topics.
The Lot Radio - A 24/7 non-profit radio station based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn
Love Injection - A NYC electronic music zine, radio show, and label.  
Money 4 Nothing - The boys (Sam and Saxton) chatting about music and capitalism.  
Music Workers Alliance - A great org fighting for musicians' rights.
No Bells - THE editorial outfit covering every SoundCloud microgenre.  
Resonate - A co-op music streaming platform.
Strikewave - A newsletter on the American labor movement.
Union of Musicians and Allied Workers - Another great org fighting for musicians' rights.
Water & Music - A research DAO on music and technology.