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New figures show how many track streams needed for artists to make minimum wage

357 Spotify streams = £1

Newly released figures reveal just how many plays your tracks would need to have on streaming platforms in order to make the equivalent of the UK minimum wage. 

With data acquired from The Trichordist, PRS For Music’s Tom Gray shared the breakdown of major streaming platforms’ average payments per play. The chart shows how many streams an artist would need to rack up to earn £1, and how many they would need in order to make one hour of minimum wage pay in the UK (£8.72).

Across the board, the figures are shocking. For instance, it would take 357 streams on Spotify for an artist to earn £1, while it would take 3,114 streams to earn an hour’s minimum wage pay. The stats aren’t much better on platforms like Google Play and Apple Music, while Amazon’s music platform comes out on top, with 111 streams required to earn £1.  You can see the full breakdown of the figures below. 

What’s more, Gray notes that these figures are based on the assumption that the artist owns 100% of the rights to their music, which is very rarely the case. “On a major label the artist earns 20% of this (after debt repayment),” he says. “And the songwriter (if she writes 100%), at best, 8-15% of each rate.”

Streaming continues to dominate the ways we listen to music in 2020, with the market surpassing £1 billion in the UK and accounting for 80% of recording revenues in the U.S. in 2019.

Check out our feature on how producers are losing millions in royalties, and what can be done to solve it, here

Learn more about how to navigate the world of streaming, and how to make money from it as an artist, here