Blog 1503: Tidal… ughhhhh

A “revolutionary” (according to their own hype) new streaming service was launched this week in jaw-droppingly decadent, vacuously rhetorical style. It remains to be seen what impact, if any, Jay-Z-owned Tidal will have on the current artist-listener-streaming dynamic. In the meantime: the launch itself was… well, I couldn’t help but live-blog as I watched the layer cake of gross unfold. Read on…

* the only thing I took from all of Alicia Keys’ hype man act was her pronunciation of the word “adage”.

Ok, that Kanye call was a bit lazy. I was trying to side-step the more obvious, but no less catty, “I’mma let you finish, but…” – but I really wanted him to do something, anything, to make this entertainment shindig actually entertaining. How decadent is Tidal? Their launch assembles THIS cast on the same stage at the same time, and yet doesn’t even have them perform:

Tidal Launch Decadence

I don’t know why, looking at this, it seems like I was singling out Kanye. I perhaps failed to communicate just how strange and incongruous I found the sight of Kanye standing on that stage, in that company, and falling in line so obediently. I have time for Kanye; I worked hard (perhaps harder than someone with other things to do should have) to understand some of his recent shenanz, and still couldn’t understand how he felt like he needed permission, approval or help to be heard WHEN WE HEAR HIM ANYWAY – which is, speaking more generally about the whole cast of characters on that stage, what my next tweets were aimed at.

I strongly feel like something deeply sinister is happening here. Perhaps I don’t have the ability to articulate just what that something is, or why I feel so strongly about it…

I’ll leave the final word to a mind much greater than mine:



Update (22.04.15):

“The numbers don’t lie: Jay-Z’s Tidal music service is already a spectacular flop” – BGR

“bond with your fans in mutual respect as opposed to bitching that you’re poor and you’re gonna save the music business when all you’re really interested in is saving yourself” – Bob Lefsetz


In the meantime: all Ray Mann music is streaming and/or downloadable via iTunes, Spotify, Rdio, Soundcloud, as well as YouTube and Vimeo, and of course this site’s own Music Page.

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