Music Megastars Unite To Launch Streaming Music Service….With No Free Option

Charles Krupa/AP
Charles Krupa/AP

Rapper and businessman Jay Z was joined by some of music’s biggest stars on Monday for the official re-launch of TIDAL, the first-ever artist owned streaming service, which plans to compete with bigs Pandora and Spotify.

Jay Z recently acquired controlling interest in the company, which announced the updated service at New York’s Skylight at Moynihan Station Monday, where TIDAL’s new owners, names like Alicia Keys, Beyoncé, Madonna and Jack White, were announced with smaller shares.

Unlike the rivals, though, TIDAL will not offer a free music tier, which will allow artists to directly profit from paid subscriptions.

According to The Daily Mail, the service is being offered to users in the United States at two different price points: $9.95 for standard sound quality and $19.99 for “lossless high fidelity sound quality.”

While Spotify streams music at 320 kilobytes per second for premium subscribers and offers lower levels for free users, TIDAL reportedly streams at 1,411 kps.

“We come to you with one voice in unity,” Alicia Keys said during the event. “The first ever artist owned global music and entertainment platform!”

She continued: “So we come together before you on this day, March 30th, 2015, with one voice in unity in the hopes that today will be another one of those moments in time, a moment that will forever change the course of music history. For today we announce of Tidal, the first ever artist-owned, global music and entertainment platform.”

“This is a platform that’s owned by artists,” Jay Z told The New York Times last week. “We are treating these people that really care about the music with the utmost respect.”

Beyonce, Alicia Keys, Daft Punk, Kanye West, Usher, deadmau5, Madonna, Rihanna, Jason Aldean, Nicki Minaj, Win Butler and Régine Chassagn of Arcade Fire, Chris Martin of Coldplay, J. Cole, Jack White, and Calvin Harris, all now own 3 percent stakes in the company.

Kanye West tweeted:


Alicia Keys:

Jason Aldean:


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