Pandora Is Now Interactive?

In a quick glance, Pandora is recorded to have up to 81 million active users and 4.3 million subscribers! As well as traditionally known for being a non-interactive streaming service, considering that the user couldn’t pick a song On-Demand. We use to treat Pandora as traditional radio, and artists would be paid by the Performing Rights Organizations, like ASCAP or BMI, in the instance the song as been played. Now we are in a new era where streaming has become more On-Demand. So, Pandora is changing the ways users listen with their platform by offering many new features with their paid subscription options. This may change many aspects of their business in regards to payment of royalties to artists, record labels, publishers, and more.

Traditional radio has been around since the late 1800’s and has continued to be a big part in the industry even after the development of a plethora of streaming services. Since Pandora was founded in 2000, they have changed the game with their introduction to an easy way to personalize an online “radio station(s)” with music that is filtered through the user’s likes and dislikes. It was as simple as that!

Pandora added in a new replay button to Pandora Plus (their add free non-interactive service) as well as innovating into the interactive radio world by introducing Pandora Premium. They claim that they have changed their platform into both an interactive and non-interactive streaming service.

Pandora must still apply for a Blanket Licence from a Performing Rights Organization (PRO) just like any traditional radio would. With this Blanket Licence, Pandora is permitted to play as many songs the PRO has to offer. This translates to, even though a song is NOT to be distributed to Pandora but has been registered with a PRO, the Blanket Licence gives Pandora access to the song. The song will begin to collect revenue from Pandora regardless but the reward won’t be as beneficial until the song is distributed fully to the streaming platform.

Performance Royalties are generated by the amount of performances or “streams” any particular song receives for the life of the copyright. Traditionally this would be split 50/50, half going to the publisher(s) and the other half to the songwriter(s). The exact royalty amount is very minuscule, about  $0.0087 per stream.

With Pandora’s new options for Pandora Premium, they will be introducing Mechanical Royalties paid directly to the Publisher, and are worth more than Performance Royalties. A Mechanical Royalty is distributed when  a song is mechanically or digitally reproduced (CD, vinyl, download).

With double the revenue streams from Pandora, dropping a new song can be very beneficial when an artist copyrights their work, picks the right online distributor (CD Baby, Tunecore, etc.), and submits the music through a Performance Rights Organization. By completing those steps, an artist is on the right path to make money from Pandora, Spotify, Tidal, and Apple Music.

The Music Industry Today

As time progresses, music trends (along with everything else in the world) changes, mostly to improve the technology innovated by developers. The music industry is trying to stabilize itself due to global changes including those in areas like music streaming, social media, and much more.

360 deals have become the normal type of record deal because they hone in on key areas in an artist career like publishing, record sales, the live sector, merchandise and more that fuels major record labels like Sony, Universal, and Warner to stay afloat.

Every artist wants to have the next platinum selling song, charting on Billboard that streams billions of times. Unfortunately, the amount of illegal downloads can potently hurt the artist in their venture, ultimately forcing him or her to go on tour in attempts to make up for those losses.

Ticket sales are very important for a touring artist because most of the ticket revenue goes to the artist. The scale of prices, Per Cap,  from GA (90% of the concert population) can be significant, as well as the “Golden Circle” (10% ) who are paying top dollar for their experience.

The momentum is changing and developers are utilizing technology like Virtual Reality with 360 drones that can capture moments never before seen at a concert. This content can be sold to individuals who can’t make it out to see the concert but still wanted to experience it firsthand. Live Nation, who are the power players for concerts, are putting on 26,000 shows yearly and 80 shows a day.

With all of this being said, along with much more to come, I believe that the future of an artist’s revenue will stay traditional. Their biggest revenue streams will come from their ticket sales and merchandise that has been filtered through a 360 record deal from one of the major labels. The industry has to keep up with these changing tides with a conservative approach to ensure that a dramatic shift doesn’t affect the music industry for the worst. 

How Music Became My Life

Hello everyone, my name is Nick aka Lethal Range, I am a music producer, entrepreneur and Artist from Pittsburgh, PA. I wasn’t this way all my life though. I chose this field because of the old saying YOLO. I knew that their might be obstacles that can stop me from pursuing my true potential, like not having the experience that some other musicians have, or family issues that put my passion on hold. But let me explain how important these obstacles were to the development of my future and me as a person. This isn’t an inspirational speech.  I’m not going to tell you to go above and beyond in life, but my goal here today is to help you understand that the reaction you have toward any situation can make all the difference to a bright future or a dark past.

I will share with you my story and how much work I put into building my foundation to a successful future in the music industry.

During my early years, I was just a normal kid in school and sports with an interest in music. I loved to write poetry and hung out with other kids that played instruments. I never thought I would want to produce music for a living, in fact I wanted to be in the medical field or enlist into the coast guard. But my life hit a huge speed bump as my mom became very ill. Her Alcoholism had hit a major turn and was sent to the hospital after having multiple seizures.  I was made aware of my mother’s illness at about 14 years old.  The struggle hit as my father was to raise my brother and I while my mother was in and out of rehab. It was up to us to take on the world and I felt as if there was no escape from this grueling situation, I was going to lose my mom and I would have to watch her slowly get worse. I would be in my room writing about my experience while she was away. The nights I spent just thinking about her was all to frightening and I prayed that she would get better everyday. She is still with us today, by the grace of God, and music was my escape to cope with the situation. My younger brother and I took the situation and channeled all of our energy toward our music. We did this to explain some of the great experiences we had with our mom and some hard ships we went through along the ways. We just wanted our mom to come home. She eventually did but couldn’t work because she had developed permanent damage the memory cortex of her brain. Her disability brought her into a deep depression and felt as if she was all alone dealing with her recovery. I wish I could have done something to help, but with my young age and inexperience with this disease,  I couldn’t prevent the inevitable and what was coming up next.

She started drinking again, worse than before. Now i could see what the alcohol was doing to her. She had started sleeping in the other room and I would rarely see her out. Her drinking behavior controlled how she walked, talked, and loved my brother and I. This wasn’t my mom I had prayed for and this surely wasn’t going to end well for my family. My mother had began falling out of love with my father and turned her back on us when she had sexual relations with an ex-Coworker from her old job. This had broken my family’s trust toward her which had separated the us and created an abundance of drama. My father had filed the divorce and the family was split.

The only thing I wanted to do was vent but no one i knew could relate to my situation. I turned to my notebook and wrote whatever came to my mind. I absorbed my surroundings and translated it into my passages. As I became older, I wanted to do more than just write. I wanted to bring together my lyrics with an instrumental. I had internet at my disposal, and was able to make to create full songs with all the ingredients (Intro, Verse, Bridge, Chorus, Outro), but couldn’t publish it in fear of copyright violations. My brother was learning how to produce music on FL Studio and used me to inspire his creations. He started out by making Electronic Dance Music and crossed over to the realm of Hip-Hop. He learned how to use his digital audio work-space very quickly and we archived a lot of music that will probably never be released but will always remind us of some of the best memories of our lives and also some of the darkest times.

Now, my family played big part in giving me the motivation to be who I am today. Which helped me realize that there will be good times and there will be bad time, but there will still be time to better yourself. I now co-own and run Aktiveight Productions LLC, a DJ entertainment and music production company, with my brother. I am enrolled in a great university that is helping my brother and I grow in this industry and I continually work hard to show the world that I have what it takes. I hope you enjoyed my story and gained something from it.