Frontman unconvinced that it can compete with Youtube
Andy Morris
09:28 5th May 2015

My Morning Jacket frontman Jim James is the latest musician to cast doubt on the merits of Jay Z's streaming site Tidal, describing the service as 'elitist and weird'.

Speaking to Billboard to mark the band's new album The Waterfall, the singer was asked his thoughts on streaming services.

He began by discussing that while free music can be a boon for those going through bigger problems ("We don’t have universal health care. Education is so expensive"), those who can afford it should contribute ("If you have enough money to pay for it, you should pay for it.")

He was less convinced by the pitch for Tidal however, claiming that Jay Z's service will not lure people to the site when they can already watch music for free on online.

"It seems kind of elitist and weird," he said. "The advertising turned me off. Twenty bucks a month obviously isn’t a lot of money for all the music in the world, but if you can’t afford health insurance, are you really going to pay for hi-res files of music you can get for free on YouTube, even if they sound like shit?" 

James' comments come in the wake of Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard's damning comments on the service. In an interview with The Daily Beast recently, Gibbard said that he would have handled the launch very differently. 

“If I had been Jay Z, I would have brought out ten artists that were underground or independent and said, ‘These are the people who are struggling to make a living in today’s music industry. Whereas this competitor streaming site pays this person 15 cents for X amount of streams, that same amount of streams on my site, on Tidal, will pay that artist this much,’” Gibbard shared. “I think they totally blew it by bringing out a bunch of millionaires and billionaires and propping them up onstage and then having them all complain about not being paid.”

As well as a solo date at Shepherd's Bush Empire, My Morning Jacket are playing this year's End Of The Road festival which takes place between 4-6 September in Wiltshire, will be headlined by Tame Impala, The War On Drugs and Sufjan Stevens. They'll be joined by the likes of Django Django, Pond, Hinds, Fat White Family, Laura Marling and many more. For tickets and more information click here.


Photo: Splash