每日英語跟讀 Ep.K119: In Streaming Age, Classical Music Gets Lost in the Metadata
When Roopa Kalyanaraman Marcello, a classical music aficionado in Brooklyn, asked her Amazon Echo for some music recently, she had a specific request: the third movement of Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto.
“It kind of energizes me, motivates me to get things done,” she said.
But the Echo, a voice-activated speaker, could not find what she wanted. First it gave her the concerto’s opening movement; then, on another try, came the second movement. But not the third.
Exasperated, Kalyanaraman Marcello gave up.
“Just play something else!” she recalled saying.
Her frustration may be familiar to fans of classical music in the streaming age. The algorithms of Spotify, Apple and Amazon are carefully engineered to steer listeners to pop hits, and Schubert and Puccini can get lost in the metadata.
Classical music has always been a specialized corner of the music business, with a discerning clientele and few genuine blockbusters. But by some measures the genre has suffered in the shift to streaming. While 2.5% of album sales in the United States are classical music, it accounts for less than 1% of total streams, according to Alpha Data, a tracking service.
Two new companies, Idagio and Primephonic, see an opportunity in the disconnect. Both are challenging the big platforms by offering streaming services devoted to classical music, with playlists that push Martha Argerich over Ariana Grande, and databases tailored to the nuances of the genre.
“The mission we are on is to turn the tide for classical music the way Spotify has done for pop,” said Thomas Steffens, the chief executive of Primephonic, which is based in Amsterdam and went online last fall.
For most of the music on Spotify or Apple Music, a listing of artist, track and album works fine. But critics of the status quo argue that the basic architecture of the classical genre — with nonperforming composers and works made up of multiple movements — is not suited to a system built for pop.
對Spotify或Apple Music上的大部分音樂來說，歌手、曲目與專輯的列表運作得很好，但批評現狀的人認為，古典音樂類別的基本架構並不適合於為流行樂而建的體系。該類別的作曲家並不表演，且作品由多個樂章組成。Source article: https://udn.com/news/story/6904/4047663
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