The musician said in a new interview that he understands why fans subscribe but that it’s “disgraceful” for artists, whom he regards as being ripped off by low pay per stream rates.
Speaking to Mojo magazine, the former The Jam frontman explained: “I am not for Spotify whatsoever. It’s greta for punters. You pay your nine quid every month and listen to whatever you want. But for the artist it’s shit. It’s disgraceful.
He continued: “I had three million Spotify pays for ‘On Sunset‘ [his latest album, released in 2020]. For that I made nine and a half grand in revenue. All right, it’s nine grand, but it’s not £3 million is it? Whichever fucker thought music should be free was a marketing whizz because that genie will not go back in the bottle.”
Weller’s comments come as the debate over the fairness of pay to artists by streaming giants continues.
Earlier this month Nadine Shah, Tim Burgess, Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien and more opened up about the ongoing issue, as MPs look to wrap up examining the economic impact that music streaming is having on artists, record labels and the wider music industry in the inquiry.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Commons Select Committee have been examining the business model since last year and whether or not the model is fair to songwriters and performers via the ‘Economics Of Music Streaming’ inquiry.
“The three major labels are bragging about record profits while thousands of musicians are seeing virtually nothing coming back to them,” she said.
“We need a fairer system in place. We need more transparency. I wish it was the case that all artists would realise their power and all stand together and unite and strike, but so many of us are so scared to lose favour with major labels and the streaming platforms. Surely we can find a way to make streaming work for all of us.”
Apple Music recently told artists it now pays double than Spotify per stream.
Meanwhile, in a four-star review of Weller’s ‘On Sunset’ last year, NME‘s Patrick Clarke noted: “This warm and experimental release suggests the Modfather’s purple patch shows no signs of fading – even the reflective stuff is innovative.”