Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s lucrative deal with Spotify has ruffled the feathers of musicians all across the globe.
The UK government was urged this week by world-renowned musicians like Paul McCartney, Chris Martin, Stevie Nicks, Robert Plant and Kate Bush to change the way they are paid for their songs getting streamed online—as many are given less than a penny for every stream.
Spotify boss Horacio Gutierrez’ defense for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex taking millions for their Archewell Audio podcast irked numerous musicians even more as he claimed that their presence on the platform created a “virtuous cycle” that got more people on the site, thereby helping struggling musicians.
However, those emerging artists have a different opinion. Speaking to the Star, Callum Gardner said: “I’ve been writing songs since I was 12 years-old. I don’t get paid from Spotify, it’s never broken even from the money I used to put songs on Spotify. It’s hard, I don’t know what we are supposed to do because they have all the power and somehow all of the artists have all agreed.”
Musician Harrison Rhys told the outlet that the platform’s deal with Harry and Meghan was an “unethical kick in the teeth.”
“I believe what Spotify have done is unethical, we are only being paid £0.0038 per stream but they are able to pay out what is probably a multi-million dollar fee to Harry and Meghan,” said Rhys.
“In reality who wouldn’t want to accept that sort of money to have their podcast broadcast and it is likely to be a positive thing for their listeners as The Sussexes definitely are doing a lot of good with their projects around the world,” he continued.
“But this last year has been the most difficult one for musicians where many have had the majority of their income lost so I feel this is a kick in the teeth,” he added.
Deputy General Secretary of Musicians’ Union, Naomi Pohl spoke to the portal as well, and said: “Most streaming revenue benefits large corporations like the major labels at the expense of artists making a decent living. The time has come for change and we are hopeful the UK Government are listening and that we fix streaming and get a better deal for all music makers.”