*Jay Z responded to the criticism about TIDAL, the music streaming app he purchased for $54 million with silent partners.
Black Twitter, fans and critics blasted high and mighty artists who focus on making money by charging them $20 for hi-definition music over issues impacting the Black community.
“What are artist gonna DO to make ME more money?” tweeted @Rebeleflor. Jay Z responded in a Q&A from the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music earlier this week.
“I guess by having a conversation, and telling people what it is. That opinion came before we even explained what it was — “This thing is horrible! … What is it?” You know? You never hear (Apple CEO) Tim Cook’s net worth whenever he tries to sell you something,” he said.
“Steve Jobs, God bless, he had to have been pretty rich — nobody’s ever said, “Oh, the rich getting richer! I won’t buy an iPhone!” Yeah, right. It’s not about being pretentious; again, this is a thing for all artists,” he added.
He went on to compare the TIDAL app to Spotify, which charges subscribers $9.99, but artists could see more benefit in the former.
“You pay $9.99 for Spotify, so why not $9.99 for TIDAL. We’re not asking for anything else, we’re just saying that we’ll spread that money to artists more fairly,” he said.
“We’re not saying anything other than that, and we’re saying that we’re in a position to bring light to this issue. We’re using our power that way,” he added.
He commented on the backlash he received for not putting more emphasis on the social issues impacting Black people, instead focusing on music and making money.
“And of course there are greater causes, of course. This is not mutually exclusive — there are other problems, real problems going on in the world. We don’t miss the problems; we try to take care of them all,” he said.
“Imagine the President: he has to take care of ISIS, gay rights, equal pay for women, discrimination — all at the same time! So, you can’t say “You started this site when you should be out in St. Louis!” It’s like, okay, J. Cole is out in St. Louis. I wasn’t in St. Louis, but I was in the governor’s office,” he added.
“Because, we can march all day long but if the laws don’t change, then we’ll be marching again and it’ll just be a different slogan on the shirt, and that’s a greater tragedy as well. Everyone has to play their part, everyone has to do different things, and it all has to happen at the same time,” he continued.