Tidal: The first ever artist-owned global music and entertainment platform.
“We want to create a better service and a better mission for fans around the world.” Those are the words of Alicia Keys, who played speaker at today’s TIDAL launch press conference. The conference, which lasted only 18 minutes, was attended by all 16 of TIDAL’s artist owners (Each of whom own 3% of the company): Jay Z (who obviously owns more than 3%, Beyonce, Kanye West, J. Cole, Jason Aldean, Daft Punk, Deadmau5, Madonna, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Alicia Keys, Usher, Chris Martin, Calvin Harris, and Arcade Fire. Following Alicia’s delivering of the definition of TIDAL and the goal of TIDAL, each owner took part in signing the TIDAL magna carta.
TIDAL will be $9.99/month for standard (mp3) quality music, HD music videos, and all exclusive, artist-curated content and playlists. There’s also the $19.99/month plan, which offers the TRUE reason TIDAL exists: HiFi, LossLess quality music. Lossless quality means that there has been no quality lost since the original recording of the song. With MP3 files, certain sounds and instruments are filtered out of songs to make the file size small enough to download and fit onto a $10 album. Lossless quality is described as having 5 times higher quality than MP3’s can offer. MP3’s offer 96 kbps. Spotify offers 320 kbps. TIDAL’s Lossless quality offers 1,411 kbps. The way music was meant to be heard!
TIDAL will also feature HD music videos, exclusive artist-curated content, high quality editorial pieces and artists interviews, and more being announced in the future. Artists (especially the 16 owners) have already suggested that TIDAL will be getting their albums exclusively for months before other streaming services (like Spotify) get them, allowing the artists to make more money off of their work, instead of the pennies that Spotify offers them. I assume this means that with albums universally coming out on Friday’s starting this July, we’ll get albums in stores and on iTunes on the same day as TIDAL. Then, Spotify will be allowed to stream 4, 5, 6 months later (Beyonce did this with her latest album — Spotify didn’t get BEYONCE until almost a full year later. Spotify still hasn’t received Taylor Swift’s RED album for similar reasons).