You Might Not Believe It, But A Lot Of Artists Made Real Money On Spotify

Artists making real money on Spotify post on the Music 3.0 Blog

The popular narrative about Spotify and streaming services in general is that they pay so little per stream that no one except the A-list artists ever make any real money. You can believe that if you want, but the fact of the matter is that artists do make money from streaming, and Spotify has the figures to prove it.

Here are some of the figures from Spotify’s Loud And Clear website that show some eye-opening data from 2021.

  • 52,600 artists generated over $10,000 on its platform in 2021
  • 16,500 artists generated more than $50k
  • 9,500 artists generated more than $100k
  • 2,170 artists generated more than $500k
  • and 1,040 artists generated more than $1 million

On top of that, these numbers are increasing in leaps and bounds. For instance, the 52,600 figure is is up by 10,100 from 2020, and more than double the number of artists that generated $10k or more on the platform in 2017 (23,400).

But there’s more, the company says that 450 artists generated over $2 million and 130 generated over $5 million in 2021.

More Data

But there’s more.

  • 718,000 songs have now surpassed a million streams on Spotify
  • 238,000 songs received a million streams in 2021 alone.
  • 230 songs have reached a billion streams

And here’s one that blows my mind that comes via Music Business Worldwide (check out this post from much more data):

  • “Over 10% of artists (5,300) who generated more than $10,000 on Spotify in 2021 released their first song ever in the last two years. In 2021, 350 of these newly-releasing artists generated $100,000 from Spotify.”

That means that brand new artists just entering the market are seeing real success from their music.

The point is that artists are making real money from the platform, and quite a few are making a living and better from it. It is possible and it is happening around you. If you’re not one of these artists, it’s time to stop complaining about the royalty rates and improve your music or marketing to get in the game, or try another platform or avenue.


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