Ye's Running

The Kanye West - Donald Trump "dragon energy" embrace is a) the least surprising thing ever
b) maddeningly entertaining and
c) all worth it for these texts from John Legend.


Just in, a 2018 State Of The Music Industry report, and at this point, no one is surprised at the findings: robust growth driven by paid audio streaming subscriptions. So why then did Spotify roll out a suite of new features to its free tier this week? Isn't the industry moving away from ad-supported revenue models? Spotify's goal with its free product is growth and their target is terrestrial radio. The new playlist feature, in particular, has major label support. Spotify is embracing their current role as "the R&D department for the entire music industry."


To promote the David Bowie exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum - which, btw, is quite good - Spotify partnered with Bowie's estate to completely transform the Broadway-Lafayette subway station near Bowie's former Manhattan home. And it's not your usual MTA ad takeover. The station is a satellite exhibition in itself, complete with limited edition branded MetroCard’s that are already sold out, and fetching $200 online as a collectible. Also of note is the subtle Spotify brand presence - a savvy move that allowed their team to turn an out-of-home ad buy into something else.


Ever since the first Model T rolled off the assembly line 110 years ago, Ford Motor Co. has embodied the American automobile. It appears another similarly seismic change is on the horizon, and in reaction Ford is all but abandoning the car business in North America, shifting exclusively to pickups, SUVs, and commercial vehicles. This may have been a long time coming - Ford already sees 90% of its portfolio in the above categories - but the symbolic nature of the announcement is striking nonetheless.



Kanye West
All Falls Down
Longform Podcast
Charlie Warzel


Phonographs to Spotify: a Brief History
Takashi Murakami



The legend Kenny Loggins for a private date - Rick + Syd led the Factory to a terrific event.


See ya next week...
This WeekMatt Pennington