Artists Weigh In On Music Streaming Services

While music fans largely embrace free streaming music services such as Spotify, musicians and artists from pop to country have expressed reservations about the impact on the financial and creative value of music. Here are some recent quotes from artists talking about the issue:

Photo: Jim Hill
Van Andel Arena, Grand Rapids, Mich.

“I think if you’re a listener, if you’re a fan and Spotify is there, of course you’re going to use it and should use it but it doesn’t mean it’s, like, fair, you know,” said Patrick Carney, drummer for The Black Keys. “It’s not up to the fan to decide what’s fair, so I just think there needs to be a little bit more openness about what is really going on there.”

“To the fans who went out and bought over a million copies of my last three albums, what you did by going out and investing in music and albums is you’re saying you believe in the same thing I believe in – that music is valuable and that music should be consumed in albums and albums should be consumed as art and appreciated,” Taylor Swift said at the American Music Awards on Sunday.

Photo: Rod Tanaka /
Pepsi Center, Denver.

“I definitely recognize that streaming is the way forward,” said singer-songwriter Aloe Blacc at the American Music Awards. “I just feel like if the U.S. law can change the rights-holders, like, the songwriters can get a better negotiating plan on the table. Unfortunately you know songwriters don’t really have a whole lot of control over the way that their copyright is exploited, and I stand for a change to the law, and I stand for songwriters who deserve a fair shake.”

Photo: Charles Sykes / Invision / AP
"VH1 You Oughta Know Live In Concert," Hammerstein Ballroom, New York City

“The debate the whole music industry is having on streaming is complicated,” country star Jason Aldean said in a recent statement. “And while I’m definitely paying attention to the business side of things, I am first and foremost an artist. I’m an artist whose career has been built by the songwriters, publishers, producers and engineers that line Music Row in Nashville. What they do has value, and I want everyone who is involved in making my music to be paid fairly. This is about trying to do what is right for the people who have given me a great life.”