Coldplay fans who are hoping to be able to listen to the British band’s recently released album on the likes of Spotify look like they could have a wait on their hands. The band have decided not to stream their new work.
A Cnet report this week said that the reason for the band’s decision to withhold the album, Mylo Xyloto, from streaming services wasn’t entirely clear.
EMI, along with the three other major record companies, is supporting streaming services in the hope that it will help combat music piracy and, according to Cnet’s sources, is “a little embarrassed” by the band’s decision.
But Coldplay isn’t the first big-name act to say no to streaming services like Spotify, Rhapsody and MOG. Tom Waits has also refused to allow his latest album, Bad As Me, to be included in Spotify’s library of some 15 million songs. British singer-songwriter Adele is another, with her most recent album, 21, also unavailable on Spotify.
In a statement, Spotify commented on the situation: “We have strong support from the music industry. We of course respect the decision of any artist who chooses not to have their music on Spotify for whatever reason. We do however hope that they will change their minds as we believe that the Spotify model is adding, and will continue to add, huge value to the music industry.”
Spotify ended its statement with a reminder of what it has achieved: “Right now we have already convinced millions of consumers to pay for music again….they are generating real revenue for the music business.”
Services such as Spotify, which allow music fans to stream their favorite songs to their Internet-connected devices for a fee – or for nothing via an ad-supported service – could well find themselves with a problem on their hands if more big-name artists decide to follow Coldplay’s example.
It’s been reported that Coldplay made the decision because its members want the album to be heard as a single piece of work, though the fact that songs from Mylo Xyloto can be bought individually from iTunes undermines that argument.
It could simply be that Chris Martin and the rest of his band aren’t happy with the money they make off each streamed song and instead want fans to purchase the CD or buy from online music stores like iTunes, which generate more revenue.
Rhapsody spokesperson Jaimee Steele told Cnet that more and more music fans are turning to streaming services and that over time bands should see revenue rise.
“Artists are getting paid every time one of their tracks is being played,” she said. “A download is sold and the revenue is distributed, but the artist doesn’t see any more money from future plays of that song. With streaming, if someone plays a song a million times, the artist will earn money from that. Music acts could potentially make more money.” But having sold more than 50 million records since starting out 15 years ago, for Coldplay, it surely can’t be about money.
Spotify has been operating in some European countries since 2008 though only launched in the US in July this year.
Find out what Digital Trends makes of Coldplay’s new album here.
[Image: Zach Klein]