How can we restore music’s status as social glue in the age of streaming?

The case for a passive discovery mechanism for friends’ playlists on Spotify. This article started with a tweet on a Saturday evening. Simply put: I wish I had a better interface to discover playlists that are popular among my friends. Spotify should make a tool that:– every day surfaces ~5 playlists– made by friends, or […]

Four of the biggest opportunities for the future of music consumption

A reflection on key trends in music, tech, and user interfaces. Soundcloud is saved, for now. On top of whatever strategic decisions they make to be able to attract follow-up investments, they face the difficult task of preserving their user community’s trust and winning back part of the trust they already lost. Tumultuous times are […]

6 lessons from 6 weeks without net neutrality

My music consumption has been clearly impacted by the lack of net neutrality on my new mobile plan. Here are my key takeaways as a heavy user of music services. This Spring, I moved from The Netherlands to Berlin, which means setting up new contracts for everything. While I’m still waiting for my flat to […]

My Midem wrap-up: Chatbots + marketing Run The Jewels panels

What a week. I spent it at Midem – one of the most well-known music business conferences organised every year in Cannes. Before I’m off to Sonár+D this week, I thought I’d type up a little update. About 10 months ago, Midem‘s conference manager got in touch with me to see if we could put a panel […]

The Moby Problem: open letter to Matt Ogle’s successor at Spotify

Almost every week, Spotify adds a Moby track to my Discover Weekly or Release Radar playlists – probably the playlists I listen to the most. The problem is: I don’t like Moby, and he’s not going away. I’ve figured out exactly why Spotify keeps recommending me Moby. I’ve also figured out what types of user […]

Online music is about to experience another MySpace moment

An emerging void signals new opportunity for innovation in digital music. The benefit of writing thoughts down is that you get to revisit them. Six years ago, I penned a piece for Hypebot called The Next MySpace. At that time, people in the music business were desperate to for another MySpace to emerge: the site had […]

Why I’m joining IDAGIO  —  a classical music startup — and moving to Berlin

Today I’m excited to announce that I’m joining IDAGIO, a streaming service for classical music lovers, as Director of Product. I’m already in the process of relocating to Berlin, where I’ll be joining the team later this month. In this post, I want to explain why I so strongly believe in this niche focused music […]

What if Spotify turned Daily Mix into a standalone product?

Implementing the obvious missing feature could point to a new product direction for Spotify.   About a month ago, Spotify introduced Daily Mix, a new set of playlists that lets you ‘rediscover’ your favourite music. It mixes past favourites with tracks you might like and its stated aim is to take the work out of organizing […]

5 Big Ideas for the UK Association of Independent Music

The Association of Independent Music (AIM) recently put out a call for ‘big ideas’ to be discussed at their Annual General Meeting. “The goal is to produce and publish by the end of this year a manifesto which sets out 10 big ideas to help the indie sector to thrive in the coming years.” I’m […]

Use Facebook Messenger to Access Spotify Discover Weekly and Release Radar – in 4 Steps

A bot for Facebook Messenger lets you access your Spotify Release Radar and Discover Weekly playlists from inside Messenger. Since it currently lacks an interface, here are the steps to follow to get new music recommendations delivered to Messenger. 1. Add the bot You can add the bot by clicking this link. 2. Sign in Tell […]

Spotify’s strategy to become a habit-forming product

Last Friday, Spotify unveiled its newest feature: Release Radar – a personalized playlist of newly released music, updated every Friday. It’s reminiscent of Discover Weekly, but Release Radar’s recommendations are always newer tracks. My first impression is that it’s much more likely to recommend music from artists you’re already familiar with. As Spotify keeps rolling […]

Are pay-per-stream royalties costing artists tens of thousands of dollars?

Is it fair that a 50-second song costs the same as a 20-minute composition? Back in the days of album-driven sales, track length didn’t matter much. If an album contains 50 tracks of 1 minute each (punk, grindcore), it would sell for roughly same price as an album with 3 tracks lasting 20 minutes each […]