The musicians lowered their voice – Kommersant FM – Kommersant

Russian artists, one by one, postpone the next concerts for an indefinite period. Recently, Boris Grebenshchikov announced on Twitter that the performances of Aquarium have been canceled until better times. Earlier, other rock bands also announced the postponement of concerts. At the same time, musicians risk losing streaming listening revenue. This is due to the fact that the “big three” record companies – Universal, Warner and Sony Music – decided to suspend work in Russia. What awaits the Russian music industry? Liliya Galyavieva understood.

The poster for March lost the most anticipated concerts. Oxxxymiron, DDT, Aquarium, Naiv, Garik Sukachev and other performers have already postponed their performances. And the Mumiy Troll group even announced the suspension of its activities. Some musical groups have not yet decided. Among them, the soloist of the group “MODY” Phil Kruzhkov:

“It’s unclear. We are not writing any new album now because there is no mood. Our next concert is March 30th. I think about what to do every day. On the one hand, I don’t want to go on stage and sing at all, on the other hand, I’m thinking of just redrawing the program, removing all the positive songs from there.”

Due to the widespread cancellation of performances by foreign and Russian performers, the concert organizers asked the head of the Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina and the Russian business ombudsman Boris Titov for support. In particular, about the abolition of coronavirus restrictions, as well as the introduction of a moratorium on the return of tickets.

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The main income for the organizers comes from the performances of foreign bands, and they are not expected in the near future, notes Evgeny Safronov, editor-in-chief of the Intermedia agency. However, in the current situation, some industry representatives will be able to benefit, he says: “Foreign bands can be forgotten, I think for a long time. As for the domestic bands, they will occupy a niche as much as possible.

This is even in a certain sense a plus, although from a creative point of view, there is no doubt that competition with foreign performers provided huge incentives for development. There are far fewer concerts now. But sooner or later it will end, and those who stay on the market will have certain advantages.”

The prospects for new music releases remain vague as well. The “big three” record companies – Universal, Warner and Sony Music – have suspended their work in Russia. Producers note that these studios occupy about 50% of the entire Russian market. According to Kommersant FM’s interlocutors, it is likely that new albums and singles by foreign musicians will no longer be officially released in the country.

It is also unclear how Russian artists who collaborate with foreign record companies will receive money from streaming auditions. However, there is a more serious problem, says Dmitry Konnov, managing partner of Zvonko Group:

“Now the main problem is not in payments from the label or distributor to the artist, but in what will happen with payment to streamers.

People will want to move from Spotify to Yandex. Will they be able to pay for a Yandex.Music subscription today if they have never been its users before? How does this payment work? This whole story makes sense when people pay for streaming, even the ridiculous 169 rubles. And if you have this money, you can’t stuff it into your phone.”

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Access to some foreign audio recordings in Russia is already restricted. For example, Rammstein’s latest track Zeit turned out to be unavailable on streaming on the day of release. Also on March 11, Pink Floyd announced that they were removing their digital releases since 1987 from all music platforms in Russia.

Mark Protasevich

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