Thus far, the topic of artists signing direct licensing deals with music-streaming services has focused largely on the west, with Spotify, Apple Music and SoundCloud. In China, the discussion has been more about the exclusive deals labels have signed with individual streaming services, who then sub-license their music to rivals. However, Chinese service NetEase Cloud Music’s latest agreement is very interesting: it’s with US hip-hop group Far East Movement.
A “multimillion dollar marketing and distribution deal” no less, according to Billboard, which added that the agreement is non-exclusive, and will see Far East Movement collaborating with Chinese artists every month to produce new material.
The band will keep the copyright to all these tracks, with the first already available on NetEase, Spotify and Apple Music. “Hopefully this deal will inspire new types of relationships and experiments between artists and platforms, and help reshape what a label could look like in this context,” said band member Kev Nish.