The Brag Media
News December 30, 2017

Car Seat Headrest says artists can still make money from Spotify

Car Seat Headrest says artists can still make money from Spotify

It seems now that whenever any young artist begins to emerge on the music scene that the advice they are given is to avoid Spotify. However, the frontman for Car Seat Headrest says that all of the hatred that Spotify receives for its royalties payments is relatively undeserved.

Over the years, Spotify’s penchant for allegedly not paying artists their deserved royalties has become so well-known and publicised that it’s almost become a joke in the music world. In fact, famous stories have even come forth about how Spotify supposedly made fake artists for playlists to avoid paying royalties, or how Spotify removed a label’s music from the service after they asked for royalties.

Earlier this year, our friends at Tone Deaf even looked into just how many plays a band would need in order to receive minimum wage from their music. We won’t bore you with the facts and figures, but the headline here is that artists would need 1.5 million streams per month in order to receive minimum wage. Understandably, for up-and-coming musos, that’s just not feasible. Or is it?

As Variety reports, Will Toledo of indie-rock band Car Seat Headrest has weighed in on the debate, saying he’s made plenty of cash from Spotify in recent years.

On Thursday, Geoff Barrow of Portishead and Beak> took to Twitter to initiate a discussion. “Ok quick question for musicians,” he wrote. “How many of you have personally made more than £500 from Spotify?” Soon enough, he was inundated with responses, with plenty of users calling out the service for the lack of royalties they have seen.

Soon, Car Seat Headrest’s Will Toledo chimed in, stating “Since 2013 I’ve made almost $30k from spotify streams of non-matador albums”. Toledo quickly clarified his response, noting how he uses Distokid, a service which users pay to have all their music placed on streaming services while keeping all royalties, in order to distribute his music.

“Income from those streams (again, not even counting my two most recent albums) would be enough to support me month to month,” Toledo concluded. “Not trying to brag, I just want some transparency. I see a lot of voices of authority disparaging streaming services as a source of income, and as someone who actually came up using them, it always seemed much better than relying on album sales.”

The Twitter thread soon reached increased attention when Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, himself a staunch opponent of Spotify and their practices, shared the Tweet and added, “I refer you, ladies and gentlemen, to the comments below …. without further comment.”

Following a lengthy discussion, Geoff Barrow then floated the idea of a ‘Spotify Lottery’, in which “somebody chooses an artist and everyone listens to their music over night for the whole night”, as a way to raise streaming royalties for unknown artists. Soon after, a user had created a Twitter page doing just that, with Barrow putting his full support behind the idea.

Car Seat Headrest’s Will Toledo is yet to make any further statements on the matter.

Check out Car Seat Headrest’s most-streamed song on Spotify:

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.


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