Because apparently there aren’t enough music apps in existence, Twitter announced today on ABC gigglefest Good Morning America that it will be making its highly anticipated foray into the crowded music market. Along with a website, Twitter #Music (hashtag!) is a new, separate app for your iPhone that’s slated to be released later this afternoon.
“Got paid £8 for 90,000 plays. Fuck spotify,” tweeted the London-based producer Jon Hopkins last week, comparing it to radio which pays “about £50 for each play.” His sentiments were echoed by U.K. producer Four Tet, who added “Spotify owned by majors who make money from shares and don’t care about paying artists.”
The tweet, coupled with news that another label, coupled with news that more than 200 labels were leaving Spotify with the distributor STHoldings, touched off a rehashed debate about online music distribution.
I used to pay $14.99 a month for Rhapsody. I dug the catalog and being able to create a playlist at home and then throw it on at a party with my phone, but it was buggy in the browser and streaming over my phone was spotty. I quit after about a year.
This morning I got on Spotify and so far the experience has been, as promised, very slick and enjoyable. The catalog seems fairly deep–I tested it with indie bands like Atlas Sound and, at the suggestion of Andy Weissman, Bardo Pond. Spotify nailed both of them. It had my favorite track from the deep soul group The Falcons, but no albums.
The interface is intuitive to anyone who’s used iTunes and after a slight hiccup I got the Facebook integration working. This was a big deal, because suddenly Spotify changed from being a great way to listen to music to a discovery tool. I saw an old college buddy on the service, browsed through his recent plays, and found some interesting new tracks.