Apple’s Zane Lowe talks Apple Music and the streaming business
Apple’s Creative Director Apple Music, Zane Lowe, has shared numerous insights on music and his company’s work in the industry.
Building artists, selling streams
The former BBC Radio 1 presenter spoke about how digital music streaming can help break new acts, identify trends and explains the impact of the technology industry on the music industry.
Some of his thoughts are a little counter-intuitive, for example:
“I don’t want to be influenced by an algorithm,” he said.
That’s interesting, because Apple uses algorithms to recommend music – but it underlines Zane’s commitment to human curation of cultural products.
Soft skills still matter
He remains convinced that the soft skills humans have will always hold the advantage when it comes to responding to music, or any other form of art.
He told the story of a track by Lil Nas X that his son told him about. He looked into the track (which was picking up loads of interest and had already begun to spike on Apple Music) and gave it a little promotion.
Apple Music got behind the track and in two weeks “it started this unprecedented run. That was the shortest amount of time where something felt it had gone from the street to a real explosion…”
He also discussed how streaming has changed the nature of his work. He points out that while radio traditionally relied on promoting pre-release tracks, streaming is about connecting songs to vast audiences. He stresses the need to contextualize and promote the tracks.
‘We’re the best streaming service’
“If a new project comes out by Post Malone I just want to amplify the shit out of it. I want to eventise it as much as possible so as many Post Malone fans as possible come in and stream Post Malone at Apple Music, because we’re the best streaming service. We get more streams, Post gets more streams, the label gets more streams, and the fans get more out of it. And that’s the four pillars of victory.”
There’s lots more in the original interview which you will find in Music Week.