“We’re at a shift on the business side and we’re at a shift artistically.”
Artistically, Dre Murray believes that hip-hop is looking for the next big sounds and style, but has not yet found it. “As far as production-wise, I think we’re going to go back to more of a 90s [style].” He believes that substance and thoughtful content will return to the forefront of hip-hop soon.
Murray believes that all of the streaming platforms will, and some argue already do, control the music industry, which is in contrast to the past domination of the “big five” record labels; Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group, EMI, and BMG Entertainment.
“The whole mentality of the music industry was that there was this elite group at the top that controlled everything.”
In the past several years, Murray says that independent artists and record labels have been taking the power from the big five. Now, “I feel like the major labels that started sinking are starting to figure it out all over again.” He says that top streaming services like Spotify and Tidal are linking up with the major record labels, and that is harming independents.
As an example, Dre Murray stated that one of his songs has had 400,000 streams on Pandora for a recent quarter (three months), and the total payout to all parties was fifty dollars.
“You may own your masters, but what does your statement really say? On the business side, we’re getting back into that clogged system to where the corporations are starting to figure things out again.”