Featurrre: Spotify CEO Explains Why Most Musicians Can’t Make A Living


Tl;dr - It’s because you suck and weren’t meant to

By My Pal Foot Foot

February 27, 2024

AI prompt: "Spotify as a vampire, sucking the blood out of a rock star"

We found this video today on Daniel Ek’s LinkedIn page. For those not six feet under in the music industry, Daniel Ek is the founder and CEO of Spotify. Early on he states the reason for the video is because he’s “getting a lot of questions around artist payouts.”. Yeah, we bet you are. Assuming all claims stated are true, it’s an interesting look at the streaming industry from the man who built the empire.

The video starts with Daniel laying down some numbers and figures, mainly that Spotify paid out $9 billion to artists in 2023. He then addresses an elephant in the room. If Spotify is paying so much to artists every year, then how come “anecdotally, you are hearing from artists how they are unhappy about the payouts they are getting from streaming.”

He then goes on to say that both these things can be simultaneously true, in short because there are more artists publishing music than ever before because technological advances have lowered the barrier of entry to music making so much. Then he makes a sports analogy, saying that millions of people play soccer but there are only a limited number of professional teams and players. Does this answer the question of why many artists are unhappy about their payouts? Watch the video for yourself below and let us know what you think!

"We are striving each and every day to make Spotify better for more and more artists and to make the system work for more and more people" -Daniel Ek