TikTok, the growing music giant

What began as a platform for people doing goofy dances has become a serious source of music discovery. I got an email from a father the other day who said “You wouldn’t believe how many times my daughter tells me she knows a song from TikTok.”

It’s also becoming an important source of revenue–or at least a catalyst for new revenue–for artists, record labels, and rightsholders. All we have to do is look at the cranberry juice-drinking doggface208’s clip featuring Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams.” It has become such a sensation that it pushed the Rumours album into the Billboard top 10 for the first time in 42 years. (Here’s the deal with TikTok streaming royalties.)

You can bet that music industry types all over the planet have been huddling over how to use TikTok for their benefit. Prince’s estate has a licensing deal with the platform. Those representing John Lennon signed something similar. And now George Michael’s music is legally available to TikTok users.

TikTok also has a new weekly music show in which a different artist will take viewers on a tour through their new work. The first such show premieres October 29 at 11:30 pm EDT. The show will run on Thursday nights, 30 minutes before new material is officially released on Friday.

Watch for TikTok to be a bigger and bigger deal to the music industry–unless, of course, Donald Trump decides to ban it. But hopefully he’ll only be around for another 13 days.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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