Gin Wigmore’s Love Hate Relationship With Streaming
The New Zealander with the mighty voice Gin Wigmore is, like so many other recording artists, frustrated by the peanuts, which rain down from the world’s leading streaming service Spotify. Or let’s call it muffins, Lars Brandle writes for Australia’s music news resource, The Industry Observer.
When Brandle and Auckland-born Wigmore, 31, chatted some months ago from her United States base, Wigmore didn’t hide her frustration with the cash-flow situation. Her interviewer, one of the scores of millions of Spotify subscribers, had paid a small fee to consume a smorgasbord of music. Wigmore’s music. “Oh, for free? Thanks,” she said with a laugh. On the royalties that flow down, “I couldn’t afford a muffin a month on that,” she admitted. “It’s pretty rough.”
Wigmore has the record business on her side. The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry’s (IFPI) CEO Frances Moore has talked about the “enormous anomaly,” the disparity between the explosion of music consumption across myriad services and the revenues returned to creators and content investors. The “value gap” is at the top of the stack of industry issues right now.
For artists it’s about choice, and compromise. Will cash fall from the sky anytime soon? Fat chance. But the future is better than the recent past. In a guest post with Billboard earlier this year, CD Baby boss Tracy Maddux advised indie artists: “don’t ignore a huge opportunity to connect with fans who are streaming. There will be millions more in 2017.” Or in other words, opt out, and miss out on opportunities. And muffins.
The industry and the artists will keep calling for a fair go. Until then, perhaps it’s time to dig deep for those who create the soundtracks to our lives. “Imagine a world without music,” Wigmore says. “It would be so sad and awful and weird and not a good place to be in. Think about that every time. Maybe donate a bit extra, to music.”
Earlier this year, Wigmore, who lives in Los Angeles, was a presenter at TEDxScottBase, filmed at New Zealand’s Antarctic research facility.
Original article by Lars Brandle, The Industry Observer, July 13, 2017.