Paul McCartney may have yanked his content from on-demand streaming services, most recently Rhapsody and Rdio.
But hey, it was nothing personal! In a recent interview with the Seattle Weekly, Concord Music Group director of digital and mobile sales Phillip Bailey now says that McCartney is actually ‘pro-streaming’ (though pulling albums is a strange way to show that support…)
“This wasn’t done because people are anti-streaming,” Bailey said. “A lot of people like to bang on Spotify and streaming services. That is not what this is about. This is about how to best profile this catalog. Streaming is absolutely viable. I’m a huge proponent of it. Even McCartney’s camp is.”
And so the layers of the onion continue to unpeel: now, it seems that Concord was hardly a driver of the latest yank-down. “When asked if the music was pulled at the request of McCartney’s management, Bailey said he didn’t want to point fingers,” Seattle Weekly journalist Chris Kornelis relayed. “He did say, however, that McCartney’s is the only Concord catalog not available for streaming…”
Which brings up a tough word for the streaming set: windowing. Because it now looks like McCartney isn’t jumping ship, he’s just making services like Spotify, Rhapsody, and Rdio wait in line while iTunes and Amazon gets the first pressing. “The move was made in part because McCartney’s ‘management has decided they would really like to have some sort of unveiling’ around the release of the catalog to subscribers,” the Weekly report continued. “They want,” Bailey says, “more than anything, to make it an event.”
So when does this ‘event’ take place? Here’s where things get vague: Kornelis told Digital Music News that Concord has loose plans to re-introduce the catalog in the Spring. But it’s unclear exactly when that happens, or if certain subscription services will get priority over others.
Stay tuned (for a few months)…
Streaming can be used sparkingly and effectively as promotion. Just don’t expect to make any money off of it. Spotify simply trains people that music should feel free and broadly accessible anytime, anywhere. Most fans don’t even know there is a subscription/paid option. Then consumers go and look for that experience everywhere (on YouTube, on blogs, on Tumblr, and everywhere else their Google search results points them a million times per day). Stream away!