A Slowly but uncertainly, more listeners are coming through all streaming services. Uncertain because the number of listeners fluctuates. Still: through Spotify, I never reached more than 100 listeners per month in 2021. At the time of writing (April 2022) 1256. By the way, the number of streams does not correspond with the number of listeners. I presume that the lower the number of listeners, the more you are able to observe how much your music is appreciated by true fans. Thousands of streams per month. Thank you fans! Moreover, there are other licenses that are more financially beneficial. I will continue to publish. Hopefully surprise in a positive way.
Although it may seem like nothing is happening anymore, the opposite is true. Since the publication of Simple Syntunes, I have tried in many ways to bring more attention to my music. The payoff from these efforts has been so small, that late last year I published my own playlists with copies on Spotify, Deezer and YouTubeMusic. Without placement on a playlist it is hardly possible to reach more listeners. As difficult as it is to acquire a spot on a playlist, it is easy to get on and stay on here.
In addition, in music it is unfortunately different from what I am used to in education, health care, municipalities and insurance. That what you have earned is actually registered by the parties that should represent your interests in it.
One of those organizations seems to be doing quite well. A PRO that records where and when radio and TV channels have played your music. With that data and that of my former distributor, I can point out to another PRO that it has overlooked at least 93% usage.
I have been working on that for months. Typical of the music industry is the viscousness with which data become available. 2-12 months for streaming services. 1-? years for PRO's.
That is why I have been looking for an other distributor, who has better payment arrangements. The tricky part is that you can first read all kinds of promises and reviews from others. However, qualities of distributors keep changing. Can be neutral, favorable or unfavorable. My own reviews of them are also partly outdated in the meantime. After the actual switch, I noticed that the new distributor did not meet my requirements in all situations. For those situations I have a third one. Even then, not everything runs smoothly, so distributors continue to require attention.
For 2022 I resolved to do things differently. More music.
In 2023, I discovered opportunities to release music under more pleasant conditions for both listeners and myself. Listeners through these services have to pay a little per song they actually listen to. As in the 20th century when I began my life. Ranges from €0.0024 to £0.033. They get a subscription- and ad-free experience in return. The musician receives a much larger share of this than with traditional streaming services. I prefer like or dislike over non-commitment.
Many services pay producers, musicians and composers fractions of cents per stream, so the people who work hardest for it can rarely make a living. If they are not extremely economical, they do not recoup their costs. An alternative service like Sonstream could be a solution to this problem.
Few listeners are using Sonstream. It advertises itself little and allows others to do so only to a limited extent. Perhaps the low usage of this service will cause me to continue to offer some of my music through traditional streaming services as well. Because of the difference in revenue per stream, the ratio in mid-2023 is: 38% via Sonstream versus 62% via Amazon, Apple, Deezer, Pandora, Spotify and YouTube. If that ratio becomes 91-9%, this could change. Future releases perhaps exclusively via Sonstream.