Jack White, Chris Martin, Daft Punk + More Unveiled as Owners of Tidal Streaming Service
The online world has been abuzz with talk of Jay Z's streaming service, Tidal. While we examined its potential power months ago, this week marks the official launch of the program, and as you might expect from something owned by Jay Z, its announcement was a star-studded event.
The first explanation of what Tidal is can be found on the service's website: "Introducing the first music streaming service that combines the best High Fidelity sound quality, High Definition music videos and expertly Curated Editorial."
Unfortunately, after Monday's (March 30) press conference, we don't know much more than that.
Led by Vania Schlogel, a "proud member of the Tidal team," the presser served more as an introduction to the owners of Tidal rather than the service itself. Alongside Jay Z, the list of owners reads like a European music festival's bill (if it only consisted of headliners):
The only owner to speak at the event was Alicia Keys, whose excitement for Tidal curbed her from unveiling too many -- if any -- details about the service. "This is incredible. This is so powerful. I think all of us, collectively, are feeling the same kind of energy," she told the crowd. "Look at this. Look at how we can do this. Look at how we can all do this together. This is really a powerful moment."
Keys' excitement is justified; Spotify and its minimal payouts to artists are constantly in the middle of conversations surrounding the music industry -- what would happen if the artists actually owned the streaming platform?
In addition to being owned by artists, Tidal will feature lossless music files for "hi-fi" subscribers (at $19.99/month), meaning the quality will never be lessened, no matter what. Whereas an MP3 file continues to lose quality as it is saved, a lossless file uses a much more intelligent -- and bigger (file size-wise) -- compression method. This means regardless of where or how you're listening to Tidal, the quality will always be high (like listening to a CD, or better). If that is not important to you, standard-quality audio is available for "premium" subscribers.
While we prepare to take Tidal out for a spin -- you can find all the subscription details here -- we are most excited to see how the music industry and fans respond. Will it matter that Jack White owns a piece of a streaming service? What does it matter to a listener that Jason Aldean is invested in Tidal? Is Madonna calling the shots any better than a business executive?
What do you think? Are you convinced that Tidal is the future of music? Let us know in the comments section below!