Coldplay to stream album on Spotify after delay

Coldplay to stream album on Spotify after delay
Chris Martin of Coldplay performs at the American Music Awards at the Microsoft Theater, in Los Angeles. Coldplay will perform at the Pepsi Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show on CBS Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016. - Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP File
NEW YORK: British rockers Coldplay, one of a select number of acts that have shied away from Spotify, will put their latest album on the leading streaming site after a one-week delay.

A message on Spotify said that "A Head Full of Dreams," Coldplay's seventh and possibly final album, will be available from Friday, one week after it was released.

Coldplay did not offer an explanation but waited four months before the band's last album, "Ghost Stories," went on streaming sites in 2014 -- an example of what the industry calls "windowing," to maximize sales in an initial period.

Streaming -- which allows unlimited, on-demand music online -- has grown rapidly in recent years.

But Spotify, which says it has more than 75 million users worldwide, has faced criticism from corners of the music industry by offering free access, although the Swedish company also has 20 million subscribers who pay to listen without advertisements.
The Wall Street Journal and the industry news site Music Business Worldwide reported Tuesday that Spotify, faced with growing pressure and competition, would ease its insistence on the free tier.

The reports said that Spotify told music executives in private talks that it would allow some artists to stream albums temporarily only to paying subscribers before releasing them to the free users.

Spotify did not comment directly on the report but said it was committed to its free tier.

"We are 100 percent committed to our model because we believe that a free, ad-supported tier combined with a more robust premium tier is the best way to deliver music to fans, create value for artists and songwriters, and grow the industry," Jonathan Prince, Spotify's global head of communications and public policy, said in a statement.

Already on Apple Music, Tidal

Coldplay immediately streamed "A Head Full of Dreams" on paid sites such as Apple Music and Tidal, the service led by rap mogul Jay-Z through which the four-member British band has offered exclusive content.

The vast majority of leading artists have, reluctantly or enthusiastically, put their works on streaming sites, which have contracts with major record labels.

The most prominent holdout is British ballad singer Adele, who is not streaming her blockbuster new album "25."

"25" has posted the strongest sales in decades, proving the theory of Adele's label that such a massively anticipated work can still sell the traditional way when it is not available through streaming.

Pop star Taylor Swift last year withdrew her catalog from Spotify, accusing the company of paltry compensation to artists.

Spotify rejects her charges, saying it has paid back more than $3 billion to creators of the music.

Swift later agreed to stream only through Apple Music after the tech giant improved compensation conditions.