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Thom Yorke hates Spotify but his albums are on Apple Music

Thom Yorke hates Spotify but his albums are on Apple Music

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Apple Music is clearly striking a chord with artists. As Stereogum points out, Yorke's solo albums are available on Apple Music, even though he's pulled them from Spotify, Rdio, and other streaming services. Radiohead's In Rainbows as well as Yorke's album with Atoms for Peace are also streaming through Apple, despite being pulled elsewhere. It's a surprising sight, as Yorke has been highly critical of how streaming services pay musicians. "Make no mistake new artists you discover on Spotify will no get paid [sic]," Yorke tweeted in 2013. "Meanwhile shareholders will shortly being rolling in it."

Another musician sides with Apple

After some controversy, Apple is now paying artists for streams during its streaming service's free trial. It's also supposed to be paying a very small amount more in royalties than Spotify. More than likely, that isn't what's attracting musicians. Ad-supported streaming brings in far less money than a paid subscription, and Apple Music is all about getting people to pay for streaming, rather than letting them listen for free like Spotify. Of course, that doesn't necessarily make for a better streaming service, but it does make for better music industry revenue.

The effect of Yorke's decision is that Apple Music ends up with yet another de facto exclusive. Same goes for Taylor Swift's 1989, which isn't contractually exclusive to Apple, but is in effect a streaming exclusive for now, as she hasn't put it up anywhere else. Apple Music is also the only streaming service with Dr. Dre's The Chronic, although there are some obvious reasons for that. It's not clear why Yorke felt differently about streaming when it comes to Apple — Swift called it a gut decision — but his most recent tweet might give some context: