How MB can help rescue classical, jazz from streaming

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How MB can help rescue classical, jazz from streaming

Jim DeLaHunt
MusicBrainz participants:

I believe you, and the MusicBrainz project, are building the
foundation for a scheme which could rescue classical and jazz music
from the streaming services business model.

Start with this fascinating article just published in Salon.com:
"It's not just David Byrne and Radiohead: Spotify, Pandora and how
streaming music kills jazz and classical"
More musicians are taking aim at the rates paid by Spotify and
Pandora, and warning whole genres are in danger
Scott Timberg, salon.com. Sunday, Jul 20, 2014 8:00 PM UTC
<http://www.salon.com/2014/07/20/its_not_just_david_byrne_and_radiohead_spotify_pandora_and_how_streaming_music_kills_jazz_and_classical/>

The article points out two problems with Spotify, Pandora, and the like:
1. their per-play streaming rates are too low
2. the present streaming services make classical and jazz music
invisible, because they settle for crudely simple metadata

"The problem is the nature of classical music, and jazz as well, and
the way they differ from pop music. They all make different use of
metadata .... Put most simply: Classical music and jazz are such a
mismatch for existing streaming services, it's almost impossible to
find stuff....

"Here's a good place to start: Say you're looking for a bedrock
recording, the Beethoven Piano Concertos, with titan Maurizio Pollini
on piano. Who is the 'artist' for this one? Is it the Berlin
Philharmonic, or Claudio Abbado, who conducts them? Is it Pollini? Or
is it Beethoven himself? If you can see the entire record jacket, you
can see who the recording includes. Otherwise, you could find
yourself guessing.

"Or, if you want music written the Russian late romantic, do you want
Rachmaninoff, or Rachmaninoff? Chances are, your service will have
one but not the other. And what do you call the movements of a
symphony or chamber piece? By their Roman numeral? Or by names like
andante or scherzo?..."

This kind of metadata is what MusicBrainz does really, really well,
of course.  Yes, the Classical Style Guide is horrendously
complicated. But it's trying to describe a complicated reality. And
it does so much better than what the streaming services use now.

I wonder if a streaming service for jazz and classical music that a)
paid fairly, b) charged what it cost to cover a), and c) searched
well across MB metadata would be successful.

FYI.
--
     --Jim DeLaHunt, [hidden email]     http://blog.jdlh.com/ (http://jdlh.com/)
       multilingual websites consultant

       157-2906 West Broadway, Vancouver BC V6K 2G8, Canada
          Canada mobile +1-604-376-8953

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