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People is ‘not The National and Bon Iver’s streaming platform’


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People isn’t just a digital service: it’s as much about a two-day gathering of musicians in Berlin, organised by a collective including members of The National and Bon Iver. But it does also now have a digital element.

“We want to create a place to evolve and share ideas around the year. That’s why we are in the process of building our own digital platform where the music from recordings, sessions and live events as well as visual art, podcasts and essays can find a home,” explains its beta website.

“For all the raw, the unpackaged, the experiments and the evolved ideas. Just like the gathering, this too is an artist-led, independent environment which uniquely offers the opportunity to the contributors to provide all the rich context to all their work that appears there.”

In an interview with Billboard, co-founder Aaron Dessner stressed that “it’s not The National and Bon Iver’s streaming platform”. Instead, he hopes it will help artists break out of traditional release and promotion cycles.

“You get out of the habit of the raw and unexpected creative moments that probably brought you to music in the first place,” he said. “So I think giving artists an outlet to share fragments and share works in progress and give the audience a place to seek it out is wonderful and I think it’ll lead to different kinds of music being made.”

Stuart Dredge

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