Business News Digital Labels & Publishers

Tidal adds detailed credit info to millions of tracks

By | Published on Monday 6 November 2017


You may remember that when Jay-Z and his pop star buddies took control of Tidal back in 2015 they pledged that they would make it the artist-friendly streaming service. And it’s perhaps with that in mind that it’s now adding detailed liner notes to tracks and albums on its platform, responding to a key artist bug bear, especially in the songwriting community.

As previously reported, songwriters and record producers have long complained that the kind of detailed credits that were generally included on most physical releases of music have often been lost in the digital age. That makes it harder for fans to discover who wrote or produced their favourite records, while also arguably breaching the songwriter’s moral right to attribution under copyright law.

The call for streaming services to address this issue has become increasingly vocal of late. Though one challenge is the good old music data problem, ie the lack of an official, decent, comprehensive and freely available database that identifies which songs are contained within what recordings, which artists perform on any one track, who wrote each song, and which labels, publishers and collecting societies released, published and represent the work.

That’s not stopped Tidal rolling out its new liner notes feature, adding pretty detailed credits to many albums and tracks on its platform. The scheme goes as far as to include information on mastering and mixing, and who created the artwork. So pretty much what musos used to look for on the packaging of vinyl or CD releases. I wonder if they’ll include the random thank yous. I always liked the random thank yous.

Commenting on its credits feature, Tidal said in a statement on Friday: “[We are] committed to bringing fans closer to their favourite musicians, as well as upholding the value of music and the contributions made by all artists. The Album and Track Info feature acknowledges the hard work of all the contributors that help make music for fans”.