This week’s survey question is very simple: Do you stream music? If so, what company do you use?
I’m curious because streaming is dominated by pop, hip-hop and R&B. It’s rare that any rock song shows up in the Top 200 of the most-streamed songs of the week. Why is this? I have a few theories.
- Streaming use is dominated by young people (i.e. under 30), a demo that’s more likely to embrace and be comfortable with new technologies.
- Rock is not the cultural force that it used to be. Far more young people (see above) are into hip-hop than any other genre.
- There’s more a culture of collecting in rock than there is in both pop and hip-hop. Rock fans like to own their music outright, even if it’s just in the form of digital files.
But rock needs to get with the times lest it be left behind in more ways that one, including culturally. Given that the major labels make more money from streaming than physical/digital sales, that’s where they’re investing their marketing and development money. That means anything with a guitar isn’t getting the push it used to. This creates the potential of a vicious downward spiral where this short shrift may contribute to the decline in rock’s popularity.
But back to the question: Do you stream? Augment your answer with any explanations as to why or why not. We’ll cover the results on my 6pm show on 102.1 The Edge/Toronto on Tuesday.