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The realities of streaming services. A necessary means of communication.

Posted: March 29, 2023

If you were to ask any musician about the benefits of streaming music platforms, you are likely to get different answers. Most likely, you will be spending more time disputing the pros and cons of streaming. The use of certain streaming platforms has been making headlines globally. Regardless of the reasons, it seems to generate more negative responses, and actions. This article is not to address the specifics on why certain artists decide not to use streaming platforms. CMV Magazine is strictly neutral on the subject. We recognize the benefits of using streaming platforms but are not immune to the plight of many artists and entertainers. The amounts of money made by the music industry is well documented.

Despite the optimism from artists and entertainers alike, streaming platforms have enabled certain views and opinions that are not widely accepted. Unfortunately, this has caused problems for streaming platforms. Possibly leaving the future progress of such platforms in question.

As a consumer of music, I have personally benefitted from the use of streaming platforms. Regardless of where I am, I can stream my favorite music. It has also allowed me to tap into music or artists that I normally would have listened too. In essence it has become a marketing tool for all sorts of artists. Just to think of about the streaming data that is made public, do you recall the high numbers that you have seen? Those streaming numbers include consumers that have never heard of you before. At least at one point, they didn’t.

I agree that they need to increase the amount per song streamed. The different platforms provide a different percentage, but it is very little. Certainly, the streaming platforms make more money off subscriptions. They can afford to pay more to each artist. There is no reason why they should be taken advantage of. Regardless of the marketing value it provides. Without the artist, there wouldn’t be a streaming platform. Without streaming platforms, artists would still find a way to get their music heard. Artists continue to use other tools and channels to make their music available for the consumer. There is no need for streaming platforms. However, streaming music makes it easier for the consumer. It also discourages the consumer from downloading music illegally.

Enter the artist who is very aware of the usefulness of streaming platforms. We want to take a moment or two and ask some applicable questions to our guest Bella Perron. If you haven’t heard of Bella Perron of Plush, you have been losing out on a phenomenal guitarist. She is a self-proclaimed country artist with accessible pop sounds. Bella Perron has fans of all ages. Many are convinced that her playing style cannot be duplicated. I have been inclined to believe them.

 

ABOUT BELLA PERRON

Lead guitarist of Plush, Bella Perron is a guitar virtuoso. She attended Berklee College of Music. Bella adds to the band’s ferocious melodies with amazing backing vocals and no holds brand of uncompromising rock.

Bella Perron is the lead guitarist for Plush. This rock band is on a mission to bring rock back to the forefront of the music industry. The band is composed of talented young women, ranging from 18-21, whose accomplishments and talent eclipse their age.

Plush is fronted by singer, songwriter and guitarist Moriah Formica, guitarist Bella Perron, bassist Ashley Suppa and drummer Faith Powell.

Plush's latest single is "Will Not Win." The song comes from the self-titled debut album, which was released in 2021 via Pavement Entertainment and features the Billboard Top 40 charting singles "Hate" and "Better Off Alone." "Will Not Win" is a high-octane rock anthem that fires up listeners. Plush has been electrifying audiences during recent live performances across the United States supporting Evanescence, Slash, Halestorm, Seether, Mammoth WVH, Daughtry, and SevenDust, as well as on the big festival stages of Rocklahoma and Welcome to Rockville and more.

Guitar Thrills Magazine has had the privilege to interview Ashley Suppa from Plush. Which was published in our November issue. It was important to interview Bella Perron as well. However, she wasn’t an after-thought. Bella Perron has an outstanding reputation for being a giant in the music industry. She is a legend before she has even had the chance to let the industry grow on her. Therefore, it is important to include her in the December issue of Guitar Thrills Magazine.

 

Interview with Bella Perron and Guitar Thrills Magazine

GT: Hello Bella. We are very excited to interview you today. We know you are touring. So, I will keep the interview as short as possible.
For years, the use of streaming platforms has been a difficult subject to talk about. Many artists recognize that they need these platforms, but the benefits do not show up in the earnings for the artists using these platforms. As mentioned, it is well documented how much the streaming platforms are making. The earnings for each of the artists, are very slim to none. However, it is a necessary evil. We live with a generation of music listeners that access their favorite music via streaming services. The band you perform with uses streaming services. What are your personal thoughts about its use?

Bella: Hello, thank you for having me. I’m thrilled to be talking about this matter with you. I think there are pros and cons to the use of streaming services, and I believe that if they properly paid artists it would be a truly wonderful platform. I think the biggest positive side to streaming services is accessibility to so many artists. I've personally become a fan of so many bands by coming across their music on Spotify. I am a fan of streaming in that aspect, as it allows people to discover different artists. For a new band like Plush, it’s definitely beneficial to have our music in this space where people are able to come across our album and share our music. That being said, the use of streaming services has completely changed the industry and how artists are paid for their work. In today’s world, our biggest source of income comes from merch sales. It's totally different from previous eras and honestly very concerning that artists are not seeing as much income from their music. I feel like right now it’s a growing period where streaming services need to adjust to properly compensate artists.

 

GT: Revenue share, or commission percentages need to increase. That is a given. Is there any draw back from your standpoint from using these platforms?

Bella: Most certainly. That is the biggest drawback that comes to mind. As a listener, I find myself listening to music on streaming services all the time, for me- and most people- it has become the most convenient way to listen to music. I am a huge fan of listening to music on vinyl and I prefer to always buy records in that format, but since I’m always traveling I find myself listening to Spotify the most frequently. I think it’s a great concept, but really needs to change to pay artists. It’s a real issue that an artist can have songs with millions of streams, but only see a small fraction of the profit.

 

GT: I know one of your recent albums were released on vinyl. Was that a matter of preference, or encouraging fans to use vinyl over other forms of media?

Bella: I think a bit of both. I’m a big fan of vinyl- I love the experience of buying a tangible record, opening it to see all the artwork, lyrics and notes, and then putting it on my turntable to really listen to the album in full. When I’m home, I always have a record going on the turntable. So when there was mention of having our debut record pressed on vinyl I was stoked. I think for the band as a whole, it was a preference to offer a variety of formats to listen to our album instead of limiting listeners to only using streaming services. We also have the album available on CD and for sale on itunes, ultimately to offer more forms of media for the listener.

 

GT: I am totally old school when it comes to music. I want something that I can see for my money. Not just a piece of art on a mobile device or software application. I want the options to use vinyl, cassette, or CD. I know the streaming services have their advantages. But there is a form of nostalgia that comes along with old school media, that can’t be replaced.

 

GT: Do you have any suggestions on how to make it fair and consistent between streaming services and artists?

Bella: I’m the same way! It’s just totally different to have the physical copy. That factor can never be replaced by streaming services. Actually one of my favorite things to do when we have free time on tour is to visit different record shops.

I think streaming services need to reevaluate how their profits are split between the company and artists. Something needs to change so it’s at least equal between artists and the streaming services. I think it has potential to be a great tool for artists, but the pay needs to increase for this to be possible. Since the artists get paid per stream, I think even increasing the pay to a few cents instead of a tiny fraction of a penny could make a big difference.

 

GT: Let’s talk about some fun stuff. I know Plush was involved with the Kiss Kruise earlier this month? How did that come about?

Bella: Yes! It was an absolute blast. Kiss is actually the band that made me want to pick up a guitar when I was 5 years old so it was a crazy full circle thing to be on the Kruise…quite surreal. We had a great time playing shows on the ship and watching so many bands.

It actually came about when we were touring opening for Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators- Todd Kerns and Brent Fitz from the Conspirators also play with Bruce Kulick and play on the Kiss Kruise. One day in catering Brent asked us what our plans for the fall were, then told us that he had recommended us to Eric Singer for the Kruise. I was just completely shocked. Seriously they are the nicest people ever to go out of their way to help a new band with such an amazing opportunity!!! We are all so grateful for their kindness.

 

GT: Nice. How did it turn out? Were you impressed by the other artists there? If so, which ones?

Bella: It was great!!! I had never been on a cruise before so I was stoked to have that experience for the first time, plus it was amazing seeing Kiss perform on the cruise. Every artist on the cruise sounded great!!! Some of the first that come to mind are Bruce Kulick, Richie Kotzen, Vixen, and Stryper, but I really enjoyed watching every band!

 

GT: Do you personally have something coming up outside of Plush? Are you going to do your own solo album?

Bella: Not at the moment. I have been writing some solo material during the time off from touring, but I don’t have a set timeframe to record and release new solo music. I’m sure I will sooner than later, I like to keep really busy so I’m sure being off from touring for the holidays will have me itching to start working on a new project.

 

GT: I think Plush is awesome. It is amazing that you were able to bring together all this pieces to ensure the success of a band. I don’t know if I could rate, who brings the most to the band. Usually, you have that one piece that stands out from the pack. I believe all of you bring something special to Plush. That is why you all we be around for a very long time.

Bella: Thank you, I appreciate it! That has been our focus since day one, having a band of four equal members who all bring something different to the band.

 

GT: We would like to follow up with you in a couple of months or so, just to see what you guys are up to. Would that be ok?

Bella: Of course, that would be fantastic. Thanks for having me!

 

GT: Excellent. We will talk to you soon. Until then, take care and keep rockin!!!!!

Bella: Thank you for having me. Take care and keep in touch!!

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