Photo courtesy of Radio Survivor
On March 30, 2015 at 5 p.m. EDT, to much fanfare and anticipation, the music streaming service Tidal was launched – or rather, relaunched. Mogul and rapper Jay Z has spearheaded the initiative, and the amount of star power packed into his press conference was impressive, but what does the revamped Tidal service mean for the music industry, and more importantly, for the consumer?
TIDAL: A Brief History
Scandinavian tech company Aspiro, which was founded in 1998, launched TIDAL in 2014, a complement to their other streaming service WiMP, which was launched in 2010. Throughout Aspiro’s history, the company has acquired various smaller tech startups, numbering at least 13 in total between 2000 and 2008. As of January 30 of this year, Aspiro announced a $56 million takeover bid from Project Panther Bidco, Ltd. Project Panther is indirectly owned and controlled by Shawn Carter, aka, Jay Z. While some shareholders objected to the takeover, claiming it undervalued the growth potential of Aspiro, the bid was accepted on March 13, 2015, with over 90% of shareholders in favor of the acquisition.
TIDAL itself is a relatively young streaming service. What differentiates it from other similar streaming services is that it boasts lossless audio streaming and HD video (currently available only to TIDAL HiFi subscribers), with over 25 million tracks and 75,000 music videos at its disposal at this point in time, with plans to increase the media library. Unlike many other competitors, however, TIDAL is a subscription-only service. Their base-plan, TIDAL Premium, will cost you $9.99 per month, with an option to upgrade to the more high-definition TIDAL HiFi for $19.99 monthly.
What do David Bowie, Beyonce, and Garth Brooks have in common? They all stepped out of themselves to put on a new face and performance for the stage! While many performers have pulled similar stunts, here are our top five alter egos. Hold on to your butts, it's gonna be a weird ride.
5) Chris Gaines
Photo courtesy of tasteofcountry.com
The late 1990s were an odd time. We were in the throes of a bull market, Britney Spears was a fresh-faced ingénue with all of her hair intact (and in pigtails), and country-pop was all the rage. We weren’t even at war with anyone. It was in this cultural climate of excess and sunny emotions that we were first introduced to the remarkable artiste Chris Gaines.
Part of me feels like I'm getting too old to watch the VMAs. I had to Google a good portion of the artists/celebrities mentioned during the red carpet event prior to the show and found myself thinking more than once, "So this is what the kids like these days, huh?" But I persevered through the entire show... for Beyonce.
Last night, Beyonce was awarded the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award — aka the Lifetime Achievement Award — which is awarded to artists who have greatly impacted music culture. Last year, this award was supplemented by a 15-minute performance by its recipient, Justin Timberlake.
And this year, Beyonce won, and gave us a 16-minute, flawfree medley of the each song from her most recent album (sans "Heaven"). Here's the full performance, including some sweet moments featuring Jay Z and Blue Ivy, too. Enjoy!
I'm just gonna leave this here... (Please note: video content is not safe for work.)
This morning, Beyonce aka Queen Bey surprised us all when she sent out an email to her "Beyhive" confirming what we've all been hoping for — yes, a Beyonce-Jay Z tour is happening. The On the Run tour will visit several stadiums this summer, with the official onsale slated for Friday, May 2, and guys I am freaking out okay.
See below for a selection of tour dates and visit the Beyonce page for more information on tickets.