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Old 23rd July 2013, 05:25 PM
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Default DJ Personally Thanks Spotify After Purchasing His First Home...

Be sure to click the link at the end to see the photo of his house

Digital Music News - DJ Personally Thanks Spotify After Purchasing His First Home...

DJ Personally Thanks Spotify After Purchasing His First Home...

Monday, July 22, 2013
by Paul Resnikoff
The following email to Spotify comes from John Silk, aka DJ Scaramanga Silk. It was sent earlier this week, and shared with Digital Music News.
----- Original Message -----
From: Scaramanga Silk (Comms)
Sent: 07/22/13 02:10 PM
To: support@spotify.com
Subject: Spotify helped me buy my first house

Dear Spotify,

I cannot thank you enough. If it was not for your company, I would not
have been able to just buy my first house!

Now I am fully aware that there is much controversy about the Spotify
business model. It appears to be great for consumers but many
independent artists and smaller record labels do not feel that they
benefit from the service.

Therefore, I hope that my story can be some good PR for you and also
reassuring to artists and labels at the same time.

Having worked in the industry as a DJ, Producer and Songwriter, I have
seen many developments over the years.
As a fan of technology, I was very intrigued by Spotify when it launched.
For me, it was clear that the best approach was to adopt a
'long tail' model. By this, my focus was to produce a high volume of
releases which would bring in revenue over a sustained time period.
Unlike physical formats, there is no restriction to quantity pressed
and reliance on shops to stock releases.

Therefore, I ensured that any releases that I signed to labels were
represented on Spotify and that I would get my relevant percentage of
stream revenue. By dedicating my time to working on multiple projects
under various pseudonyms (and even as a ghost producer on many
occasions), I have managed to build up a significant portfolio of
releases totalling 157 tracks approximately (at present). These have
been released across a number of labels in a range of genres. Many of
the tracks have been for the independent music sector and have
included remixes, originals, production and writing credits. There
have even been a handful of film scores included. Luckily, many of
these releases have had good marketing exposure which always helps.

So, after several years of adapting to the new digital landscape, I
can confirm that the 'long tail' model can work. I do appreciate that
if an artist or label cannot produce mass volume then they may
struggle to achieve this level of success. Furthermore, it is also
very important that running costs are kept low. If I had to hire a
studio full-time, then this would have been a major impediment.
Fortunately for me, I have been able to establish a studio from DJing
fees. In addition, I do not self release my material anymore. This
means that time / cost / marketing is the responsibility of the label.
However, there is a trade-off to be had here as I get a smaller
percentage share of stream revenue as I am not the sole owner of the
work because the labels take their percentage too. From my
calculations, this solution is the most cost-effective for my

Each year, I find that the revenue from streaming is consistent. In
fact, as I release more material, I have also found that revenue on
previous releases has an uplift. This confirms that the 'catalogue
approach' applied to the 'long tail' model is a system that can work
for the modern day musician. The beauty of it all is that there are no
costs involved once a track is created. The labels / distributors
manage the Spotify upload and admin process. I do not have to worry
about test pressings, manufacturing, distribution and delivery of
physical stock for these releases.

Some of the labels that I have signed to do still release vinyl and
CD. They all report that sales are not what they used to be but they
do inform me that they do still have a demand for physical formats.
Personally, I do not use Spotify as a consumer. As a DJ, I need to
have high quality audio (WAV format) and therefore opt for WAV
downloads, CD or vinyl. Also, many of the independent artists and
labels that I support do not have their music on Spotify so I have to
source it elsewhere. Bandcamp has been fantastic for this in recent

So, I recently received my Q2 streaming revenue statements from a
number of labels. As of now, I have earned sufficient income from
Spotify to enable me to buy my first house. This has been a long term
dream of mine and I am delighted to have finally achieved it. Thank
you so much!

You can see a photo of my house here:


You should pop round for tea sometime.

Best regards,

John Silk
(a.k.a DJ Scaramanga Silk)

Scaramanga Silk - Electronic to the Core
stream it, stream it live
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