The Fader investigates UMG’s streaming-compilations strategy


Music website The Fader has been doing some digging into a series of streaming compilations released by Universal Music Group. It claims that UMG has released ‘hundreds’ of albums on Spotify based on specific topics and moods, some of them quite specific. “There’s a VSCO Girl album packed with songs from Tove Lo and LANY. There’s a Memes For Teens album highlighting Owl City and Soulja Boy. There’s Pastel Goth, there’s Bass Songs For Car, there’s Shush Up And Dance. There’s even a Mental Health Awareness Month album, with songs from Papa Roach, Demi Lovato, and Avicii,” it reported.

The article also outlined a couple of compilations, ‘Old Town Country Road’ and ‘Hot Girl Summer’, whose names are clearly based on popular tracks by artists signed to other labels (Lil Nas X and Megan Thee Stallion). While the piece has the tone of an exposé, and piggybacking on other labels’ hits aside, this kind of exploration of streaming-only compilations (as opposed to playlists, for which Spotify has dominance on its own platform) is a sensible move for a label. Albeit one whose success, in terms of metrics, remains mysterious.

Stuart Dredge

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