You Have Not Yet Heard Your Favourite Song

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You Have Not Yet Heard Your Favourite Song

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Author: Glenn McDonald

Type: Paperback

ISBN: 9781914487156

Date: 20th June, 2024


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'If you want to know anything about how music surfaces today, how to find it, or how to create it, you will find what you need right here.' Joseph Menn, Washington Post writer For the first time in history, almost every song ever recorded is available instantly. Everywhere.  This book charts what music's dazzling digital revolution really means for fans and artists. As a former data guru at the world's biggest streaming service, Spotify, Glenn McDonald reveals: What the tech giants know about you How they serve up your next song Whether fans can cheat the algorithm  Whether jazz is dead and ASMR is the new punk Your chances of becoming a rock star Having analysed the streams of 500 million people, McDonald explores what the data tells us about music and about ourselves, from the secrets of russelåter in Norway to Christmas in the Philippines. Statistically, you have not yet heard your lifetime's favourite song. This book will take you on a voyage of discovery through music's fast-flowing new waters. 10 bonus playlists of wonder included! About the Author Glenn McDonald is expertly placed to provide a comprehensive picture of the global music industry in the 2020s. Growing up in 198Os and 1990s America, he was an obsessive collector of physical music - CDs and vinyl albums. But he soon realised the revolutionary power of digital media to make songs more widely accessible. He started doing data work at the US music-intelligence startup The Echo Nest, which was soon acquired by Spotify. He became Spotify's 'Data Alchemist.' His website Every Noise at Once ( is an unprecedented computational map of the world's music genres. Reviews 'If you want to know anything about how music surfaces today, how to find it, or how to create it, you will find what you need right here. And you will be highly entertained and amused in the process.' - Joseph Menn, Washington Post staff writer and author of All the Rave: The Rise and Fall of Shawn Fanning's Napster. 'We used to sell CDs by the weight of pallets, thanks to streaming we know how our content is consumed. In this immersive book, Glenn has demonstrated what we can do with this knowledge, so other industries facing their Napster Moment can learn from his unrivalled first mover advantage' - Will Page, author of Pivot and former Chief Economist of Spotify 'I'd say that reading this book is the next best thing to having an in-depth, impassioned, hours-long fika with Glenn McDonald about music and culture and all of the most burning topics of our time... but, I'd be lying. It's even better. This book is a true behind-the-scenes examination of our culture and our industry from the perspective of someone who was in the thick of it from the beginning. It's a history of the streaming era, written by someone who made history in the streaming era." Meg Tarquinio, PhD, Spotify/Twitch/Nettwerk Music Group 'Throughout McDonald's book, personal anecdotes and his own love of music spill out in witty, conversational prose. Even chapters that delve into streaming's complex finances - unsurprisingly, your £15 monthly fee does not go directly to your favourite artist, but is split between that month's "most streamed," meaning that megastars such as Swift and Ed Sheeran stay at the top of the pyramid - are told in layman's terms.' Poppie Platt, The Daily Telegraph  Extract CHAPTER 9. MERCENARIES AND FAN ARMIES Where there's an 'economic system,' there's probably fraud. This is not a proud truth to admit about humanity, but it seems to me to have been consistently historically true. Money is supposed to be a bookkeeping mechanism, but it becomes a goal. Fraud and cheating existed in the music business, like any business, long before streaming happened. Back when charts were based on people reporting sales numbers on phone calls, those people could be bribed to say different numbers. Radio DJs could be paid to pretend they were playing a song more because they just liked it. Accounting could be manipulated. Streaming doesn't necessarily make cheating easier, overall, but it definitely makes it more accessible to introverts. Instead of making phone calls, you can write computer programs that pretend to be streaming-music listeners. Piracy maintains a certain dastardly allure. Streaming music fraud is not, to be brutally honest, the most glamorous or profitable form of dastrardry. Streaming rewards accumulate in tiny micro-transactions, and the software necessary to laboriously accumulate micro-royalties illegitimately isn't any easier to write than legal software for which you can get paid normal salaries. It only really scales if you become a service-provider selling fraud as a service, and then you're a business with business problems, instead of a pirate with a rakish eye-patch and the sea air in your hair. If you want to cheat your way to riches, you're better off trying to do it in junk stocks or cryptocurrencies, where there's way too much money sloshing around and the distinction between "legitimate" behavior and cheating is fuzzy. So you might have thought that fraud wouldn't be a big issue in streaming... Buy the book and carry on reading

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