In India’s overcrowded audio streaming market, a focus on independent music has been one of the ways DSPs have differentiated themselves.
Although Spotify has been active in the space since launching in the region in early 2019, Apple Music has been spotlighting Indian indie for even longer. Primarily through its ‘Hear It Here. First.’ editorial programme, through which more than 85 independent acts have exclusively released their albums, EPs and singles on the service since October 2017.
“Exclusive” here really means “windowed” as the tracks are usually available only on Apple Music for a limited period of time, typically a week during which the artists get marketing support in the form of carousel and playlist placements. Apple Music has also been showcasing Indian indie artists through its ‘Up Next’ program.
Rappers Prabh Deep and Kr$na, singer-songwriter Mali and electronic music producer Sandunes are some of the musicians who have been picked for Up Next so far while bass music producer Nucleya, hip-hop MCs Divine and Raja Kumari and rock band Peter Cat Recording Co. are among those that have got airplay. It all seems to be having a real impact on streams – new releases by Prateek Kuhad, Ritviz and composer-lyricist Anuv Jain are currently in Apple Music India’s all-genre Top 100 chart.
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