Spotify has Changed the way we Listen to music
Music Listening: The way we access music is continuously evolving, from vinyl to cassettes to MP3 players.
Instant music streaming platforms such as Spotify make it easier to discover and access new music nowadays.
No more hunting for unknown musicians in record stores, inquiring about new tracks from your buddy group, purchasing music magazines, or illegally downloading entire albums from Limewire until you discover something new you enjoy.
You are not even need to conduct a web search or keep track of the millions of various music magazines.
True, Spotify has mostly taken over the way we discover new music.
What effect has Spotify had on our listening habits? How did it acquire such clout as a tastemaker?
On its platform, we are more likely to find new songs.
With features that allow us to discover comparable artists, a ‘Discover Weekly’ playlist suited to our current musical tastes, and’song radio’ suggestions similar to a song we enjoy, it’s no surprise that we’re able to add a new song or two to our libraries virtually every day.
Spotify encourages this type of engagement because we want to consume music more than ever: for moods, special occasions, and activity soundtracks, among other things.
And it is true that we are more engaged with it. According to Stifel’s Spotify Initiation of Coverage, ‘Spotify recommended more than 30% of total listening in 2017, up from less than 20% in 2015, enabling a highly personalized listening experience.’
Spotify is able to analyze user data, including listening behaviors that may vary according to the time of day, due to the machine learning engine that powers it.
This information is then used to generate new Spotify playlist ideas for specific times of day when users can discover new music.
As an example, create a ‘Acoustic Calm’ or ‘Nature Sounds’ playlist to listen to before bed.
Spotify can grasp complicated elements that consumers enjoy and enhance its recommendations by analyzing a song’s volume, pace, and duration, among other things.
On Spotify platform, we are more likely to find new songs.
With features like seeing comparable artists that other people listen to, a ‘Discover Weekly’ playlist suited to our existing music taste, and’song radio’ suggestions similar to a song we enjoy, it’s no surprise that we can add a new song or two to our libraries virtually every day.
Spotify wants us to interact with it in this manner because we want to consume music in more ways than ever before: for moods, special occasions, soundtracks for activities, and so on.
And we are engaging with it more. ‘Spotify recommended over 30 percent of overall listening in 2017, up from less than 20 percent in 2015, offering a highly personalized listening experience,’ according to Stifel’s Spotify Initiation of Coverage.
Spotify is able to analyze user data, including changing listening habits throughout the day, thanks to the machine learning engine that powers it.
This is then used to generate fresh Spotify playlist ideas for key times when users can discover new music. For example, a ‘Acoustic Calm‘ or ‘Nature Sounds‘ playlist before going to bed.
Spotify can grasp complicated elements consumers appreciate and improve its recommendations by analyzing a song’s volume, pace, and duration, among other things.
We are more inclined to listen to a variety of genres.
When the opportunity to discover new artists is presented to us, we seize it. Nobody is forced to listen to a specific genre.
Music subculture and genrefication are a thing of the past. We now like to vary things up and be open to different styles.
That is why there are genres like as indietronica, shoegaze, and pysch folk.
In fact, when a millennial insight agency called Ypulse polled 1,000 young adults about their favorite artists, many of them were unable to respond.
‘This generation is interested in so many music genres and artists,’ the experiment concluded.
Few will judge you for having both Ed Sheeran and The Weeknd in your music collection.
This started with the digitization of music, but Spotify’s algorithm operates in such a manner that it may construct numerous listener identities for each user in order to promote music that they are likely to listen to.
According to Spotify’s Ajay Kalia, “a person’s choice will fluctuate depending on the sort of music, their present activities, the time of day, and so on.” Our goal is to develop a nuanced grasp of each aspect of your taste.’
And it is determined by three factors:
- Models of collaborative filtering that analyze both your behavior and the behavior of listeners identical to you
- Text-analysis models based on Natural Language Processing (NLP).
- Audio models that examine the raw audio recordings themselves (for tempo, duration, danceability and more)
We are more likely to listen to lyrics.
Spotify’s partnership with Genius has also altered how we engage with songs by allowing us to see lyrics on the screen.
When people can relate to the lyrics of a song, they are more likely to pay attention to them. This emotional connection means a lot to listeners.
This works great, especially for fans who are curious in the story behind a song by their favorite musician.
Genius provides access to the artist’s mind: it has 3.8 million YouTube followers and uploads interviews with musicians every day in which they explain what their lyrics imply.
We are more inclined to create our own playlists.
Making playlists is another function that practically all Spotify users use.
Spotify even creates personalized playlists for individual listeners, known as ‘Daily Mixes,’ based on their most-played songs and genres.
They also have an iconic yearly marketing effort that promotes playlists by leveraging their customers’ listening habits and playlist creation abilities.
Independent artists have a better chance of success.
Listeners’ listening habits are becoming more flexible as non-mainstream music becomes more freely available on Spotify and the number of playlists dedicated to indie artists grows.
This interest for new music eventually leads to live performance chances for musicians, and we see indie acts embarking on international tours or festivals, reuniting with followers from all over the world.
In an interview with The Guardian, Oxford four-piece Glass Animals stated that they owed their success to streaming. After releasing their debut album, the band went on tour for two and a half years, followed by another two and a half years after releasing their second album.
And they’re not a one-time occurrence. In 2017, Spotify alone produced more over $40 million in ticket sales.
Spotify also serves as a venue for musicians to promote their stuff on the ‘Merch Bar,’ as well as notify fans and followers when they have a show in their city.
We are less inclined to listen to pirated music.
After years of insecurity, the music industry has regained a foothold with the emergence of digital streaming services.
However, technology still has a long way to go before it can compete with the physical music age.
Spotify offers ad-free listening to millions of music for just £9.99 per month. Spotify, on the other hand, pays artists $0.00038 per play.
So, as a band, you’d be making a respectable living if you managed to acquire over a billion plays in a year, earning up to $380,000. However, this is not an easy task for small artists, and an unequal royalties scheme is frequently cited as one of the reasons Spotify is chastised.
According to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry’s (IFPI) 2018 Global Music Report:
‘The global recorded music market expanded by 8.1 percent in 2017. This was the third year in a row of global increase, and it was one of the fastest rates of growth since the IFPI began tracking the business in 1997.
Revenues increased in the majority of markets, including eight of the world’s top ten. Digital revenues now account for more than half (54%) of the global recorded music market, thanks to listeners’ involvement with streaming – particularly paid subscription audio streaming.’
According to the Digital Media Association, music piracy has decreased by more than 50% since 2018. However, the war against unfair competition in the music industry is never-ending, and Spotify has become the latest battleground.
Musicians are more likely to experience stress.
Nobody can deny that the music industry is very competitive and necessitates a thick skin. Although music streaming services allow artists to be more independent, they face more competition and pressure to remain relevant, popular, and at the top of their game.
They are also not viewed as profitable as the industry’s major names, which results in them being paid less for their often greater efforts.
While some more successful artists say that Spotify is harming the music industry by undervaluing producers, indie artists frequently hail it as a game-changer that has enabled them to reach a wider audience.
‘Spotify won’t establish your career, nor is that its obligation,’ says Brooklyn-based independent singer-songwriter Vérité. It serves as a discovery platform.
It will connect your listeners to your merchandise and shows, as well as providing back-end data to help you discover and analyze your fans.’
However, the bulk of listeners prefer to listen to mainstream music rather than purchasing records. This cycle compels the artist/band to tour for longer periods of time and release EP after EP.
When you have a lot of power, you also have a lot of responsibility.
Playlists allow Spotify to be one step ahead of its users in determining what they listen to.
Although there is hope that Spotify will continue to support diverse music listening habits and help musicians find new audiences, the platform should be more open to discussions with musicians about how it might empower them and their creativity.
Spotify, with so much sway over what music people listen to, can adjust their business model to encourage more new independent artists.
It appears to have already started down this path, saying in September 2018 that musicians would be able to directly upload their music to its platform.
Spotify has forever altered listening habits. More people now have access to more music than ever before. There has to be a method for both fans and artists to gain from this.
Spotify, for all of its technical triumphs, requires leadership and help to ensure that its revolution works for everyone.