There Are 4 Million Songs on Spotify That Have Never Been Played Once…

Spotify is a wonderful place to spread your music and get discovered.  But that assumes that anyone knows you exist.

According to data just released by Spotify, 80 percent of the 20 million songs on the service have been streamed at least once.  Which also means that 4 million tracks have never been played — not once.

 

 

(data from Spotify’s infographic, ‘It’s Spotify’s Fifth Birthday Today!’)

 

 

62 Responses

    • Lol
      Lol

      How about streamed under 100 times?
      And how many songs on iiTunes have never been purchased? Need a bit of context here

      Reply
    • GGG
      GGG

      His point is Spotify is evil because not every random hack who can make a beat on Garageband can get rich and famous from it.

      Reply
    • TuneHunter

      The point is that Spotify is not a discovery zone for music or musicians. It is just giant meat grinder of tunes discovered by Shazam on the radio and then flooded with Ek’ similar tune cyber discovery. (powered by The Echo Nest)

      Conclusion we are dealing with cloud based, feature loaded, monster iPod free or near free of charge.
      YouTube is the same, just less features but more tunes.

      Spotify to Napster is like Audi Q7 to Ford T. One was executed the other brings orgasm to some industry excs.

      The only hope is monetization of music at the discovery moment, first sales then applied also to streaming. Stream to own with no subscription is only fair way to go! Otherwise “proven business” models like Spotify or YouTube are preventing easy and profitable merchantability of music.
      We have 100 billion dollars of annual goodwill in music. We cannot allow to seattle at 35 billion in 2020

      Reply
      • Licensing Guru

        I use Spotify loads to buy albums for my clients and to promote music for media users to licence, like for film-makers. They want to hear the stuff first before they buy or see how it works with their film scene, so it does encourage extra royalties & Synch fees for some people. I do think that the Karaoke ones seem to be to cover bands that don’t want to licence their tracks, which isn’t good for the artists. I wouldn’t be happy if I saw some of my work done as a sound-a-like, when I specifically banned my content.

        Reply
  1. Catharus Guttatus
    Catharus Guttatus

    Actually, that’s kind of intriguing…
    Do they have a feature that allows you to pull content from those tracks? I’d use something like that – “build a playlist with 20 tracks that have never ever been played before”….

    Reply
  2. GGG
    GGG

    Have you ever looked into Spotify? There’s probably 1 million of those shitty karaoke tracks that have gone unplayed alone. Then add in the millions of worthless wanna “artists” I’m surprised it’s not more.

    Reply
  3. Ameritz
    Ameritz

    I actually make a living supplying those ‘nasty shitty karaoke tracks’ You know, some people actually like Karaoke tracks.

    Reply
    • metadata

      This comment is The long tail strategy explained to all the people who didn’t read the book, and still complaints about it being flawed. All those unstreamed karaoke tracks are there, and must be there, to support and complement the other ones that get a very little amount of streams, but combined in big catalogs can support a living to people like you. And anyway, what is their problem about some data stored for nothing on a server that they don’t pay for? The internet is supposed to work that way, how many people will read a wikipedia 3 lines article about kolo serbian dance in hungarian language? bot that dosen’t mean it’s a problem that it’s there for the people to have. In fact, it’s good for everybody.

      Reply
      • Yep

        Exactly. Does if matter? The open door policy of these store allows shitty karaoke. But it also allows your band. The yogo disc. That obscure 70s band you never thought you would hear again. Inevitably this produces a % of music never heard. So what?

        Reply
  4. Locke
    Locke

    New and young artist’s slober at the mere thought of being on Spotify. They see Spotify not as a means for their listeners (there built in fanbase) to listen to them, but as a means for new listeners to join the fanbase by some magical Spotify website that gives off the impression that your song will be among a track listing that will be used for the radio function that people all around the world (supposedly) listen to.

    Spotify does NOT make you more visible
    Spotify does NOT make you more accessible
    Spotify does NOT help your music reach people
    Spotify DOES host your music. Just like Bandcamp, Myspace, Dropbox, Youtube, Vimeo, Youjizz, YTMND, Amazon, Itunes, Pandora, Bandvista, Soundclick, Reverb Nation, MP3.com…
    Did I miss any? O yea, probably a few hundred.

    So your song did not get played on Spotify. Suprised? Im not. I wish I could pay less than a hundred dollars and have listeners all over the world somehow be notified of my music and listen to it.
    Or they could just buy the CD from me, find me on my own site, or come out to a show. With those options I walk home with money to feed my blog addiction. Without that cash Id be limited to posting on here from my local library.

    Reply
    • TuneHunter

      You got it.
      To be discovered or to be visible you have to be played on the radio – any radio or in the coffee shop or the elevator!
      If you are any good and if radio would make money from playing good tunes you would have slum dunk.

      Lets fire Shazam the Pimp and hire Shazam the toll man!

      Reply
    • Soshahi

      Check out AAMPP

      AAMPP™ is the easiest way for musicians, music professionals and fans to create a [Music Identity™], connect, discover and share music with the world.

      AAMPP™ (simply pronounced AMP) is an all inclusive independent music services provider and social music network for aspiring Artists, Agents, Managers, Producers, Promoters and the fans of music to create a [Music Identity™] which allows them to manage their online music presence in a single social environment, that is user friendly and tailored directly to their needs, allowing them to communicate more efficiently, engage and collaborate instantly and create new music for fans to discover.

      Reply
  5. Gabbar Singh

    thats why I love pandora…focus on quality. Their genome project was launched with 500 K songs and still they got traffic. million, billion, zillion songs…all bullshit. statistically someone will remember upto 150-200 thousand songs in his/her life.

    Reply
  6. MySpiltMilk

    I’d like to know how many of the artists who made the unheard tracks are making an effort to alert the world of their existence. When I edited a music magazine, I regularly got CD submissions for review from people who didn’t play or promote themselves, people who seemed to be waiting for me to make their name and generate their audience for them. I wonder if they’re waiting for Spotify to do the same.

    Reply
  7. Spoken X Digital Media Group

    Even if you get on Apple iTunes you may not get discovered as a new artist and the road gets even rougher if you’re an independent. When I first got online with fifty thousand artist, labels and publishers for digital distribution 10 years ago, you couldn’t even register your songs with BMI and ASCAP or with the premier publishing agent , Harry Fox Agency , unless you had a working contract somewhere. Harry Fox was not taking small one man shows like me. I didn’t get the publishing agent’s attention until I showed then fifty (50) world wide digital distribution deals with no signatures. .

    Reply
  8. Nasa

    For those questioning how many songs sit on Itunes un-downloaded….

    Spotify promotes itself as a music discovery engine, under the pretense that you will be paid less as an artist but you will be exposed to a large amount of people so it’s a fair trade off. These stats show that it is NOT a fair trade off and is no better then an Itunes model for music discovery.

    The key difference being, Itunes pays what most what deem a fair wage to artists for DLs in that moment when your music is accessed. Spotify does not.

    Reply
  9. Stephen- Craig Aristei

    I find myself forced to repeat what Locke (above,), so aptly stated:Spotify does NOT make you more visible
    Spotify does NOT make you more accessible
    Spotify does NOT help your music reach people
    Spotify DOES host your music. Just like Bandcamp, Myspace, Dropbox, Youtube, Vimeo, Youjizz, YTMND, Amazon, Itunes, Pandora, Bandvista, Soundclick, Reverb Nation, MP3.com…
    Did I miss any? O yea, probably a few hundred.

    So your song did not get played on Spotify. Suprised? Im not.

    And I would like to follow this by adding a thought and challenge….To those of us out there who grew up in the 60’s and learned first hand how, by joining our voices together, we could impact and in fact force change, I ask you to please consider the thought, that if every successful songwriter, and music publisher demanded that their music be removed from these services….. hopefully that might inspire all the recording artists, managers and producers to have the testicular fortitude to follow and join this movement, and maybe, collectively, because of our “dissatisfaction”, we could motivate the record labels and everyone else to stop supporting these “pyramid scheme businesses” and force them (these so called “new industry model services”), to at least properly compensate the creators and owners of these works that they have built their fortunes on…

    When you clearly consider the options, we have all received our pitiful “royalty statements” from them, so we now know that by “not participating”, we literally have “NOTHING TO LOOSE”, because no one is being properly compensated….And if you think about it, by joining together in this protest/decent”, we open up the opportunities and possibilities to have EVERYTHING TO GAIN ! So what is stopping everyone? ? We all need to stop complaining and start taking action…….Because, if you don’t “stand up for yourself” and protect your rights, then you should all stop complaining ! ! !

    Reply
  10. hippydog

    Its been talked about a few times here..
    Curation..
    Terrestrial radio did the curation for us.. But if you bypass radio, then who does it?
    That seems to be the part everyone is kinda missing in the “new boss” strategy.. Pandora had the most technical way to do it, but can’t keep up with the influx.. Youtube? i believe thats more by accident then purpose.. Itunes? they are trying but since their object is to sell phones they can only go so far.

    If you merged Facebook, with Spotify and with pandora, THEN we would say something interesting.. 🙂

    Reply
  11. JDT

    I completely agree that, on it’s own, “Spotify does NOT make you more visible.” Spotify isn’t a service that is going to start some sort of marketing campaign for you. It isn’t going to build you a fan base from scratch. That’s just not what it does.
    However, I completely disagree that, “Spotify does NOT make you more accessible.” Or that, “Spotify does NOT help your music reach people.” – The benefit of Spotify comes after you’ve already started to create your own buzz. It benefits artist during the “word of mouth” phase. Not everyone, but a lot of people (and more and more everyday) use Spotify as their first, and sometimes only, stop when appempting to “check out” an artist that their friend, or whoever, has told them about. But even better, with FB integration and it’s own built-in notification system, no words even need to come out of any mouths for a friend to “tell” another friend about said music to check out. Obviously, there are plenty of other places to “host” your music, but with the amount of music overwhelming everybody today, it’s all about immediate accessibility and ease of use. Even an expected 15 seconds of extra work can easily be a deterrent for a lot of people these days. Also, even if pretty much anybody can get their music onto the site, it still adds a strong, even if subconscious, sense of legitimacy to the artist.

    But having said all that, the pay-out rates that Spotify uses to compensate artists is F*CKING BULLSH!T. It’s a model and service with a ton of potential to benefit everyone on all sides of the equation, but certain things need to change.

    Reply
    • Locke

      If Spotify does indeed make your music more accessible, Im interested to hear what your thoughts are on these 4 million songs? Why haven’t they been played once yet?

      I did forget one thing to completely mention, Spotify DOES show your friends what you are listening to. It does expand your visibility, more so than bandcamp/youtube/etc.

      But for that to benefit you, your song has to actually be played…

      Reply
  12. PRock

    The problem with Spotify and other streaming services (with large Spotify stock-stakes held by the major labels), is that they serve the labels, not the artists. In short, this is a latest way for the labels to swindle their own artists.

    Reply
  13. jl

    This is a good stat but they should have included other breakdown points like 100 times, 1000 times and similar.

    Reply
  14. sam beal

    none of that bothers me. what does bother me is a bunch of stations I either created while drunk or when my kids picked up the phone. I cannot delete them, which is a tyrannical. So I deleted the f’ing app.

    Reply
  15. Tidal vs Spotify | Speak Simlish To Me

    […] With 20 million songs for users to listen to and unlimited listening, many might think that artists on Spotify get compensated very well since there are many people to stream their music multiple times. Not only are they wrong because of how Spotify pays artists, but they are also wrong in the fact that just because an artist is on Spotify does not meant they even get streamed. In 2013, Spotify announced that 80% of its 20 million songs had been streamed at least once which then means that 4 million songs on Spotify that have never even been streamed. […]

    Reply
  16. Dystonal Rant #19 – “Good” Music is not “Good” Enough | Dystonal

    […] With the drop in price of music gear and music education, the advent of blogs, of SoundCloud and of YouTube and the uprising of streaming services like Spotify or Apple Music, it has never been easier to get music written, mixed, mastered, marketed and distributed. This means that many more people are doing it and because of this, in 2013 there were 4 million tracks on Spotify that had never been played once. […]

    Reply
  17. Geddy76

    I’ve discovered a lot of artists I would never have without Spotify, through word of mouth, recommendations, similar artists and just randomly clicking. I’m happy to pay the premium price for it, and the more people listen to Spotify, the more money the artists get eventually. Unfortunately, unknown bands will remain unknown whatever medium they have music published on, unless it gets broadcast to the masses at some point. I’ve been in enough bands to know that putting your music ‘out there’ does not guarantee you a living. That’s the reality of it. That, and I may have been in rubbish bands…

    Reply
  18. Good Music is not “Good” Enough [Rant 19] | Dystonal

    […] With the drop in price of music gear and music education, the advent of blogs, of SoundCloud and of YouTube and the uprising of streaming services like Spotify or Apple Music, it has never been easier to get music written, mixed, mastered, marketed and distributed. This means that many more people are doing it and because of this, in 2013 there were 4 million tracks on Spotify that had never been played once. […]

    Reply

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