It may seem like a strange question, as we know artists like Drake, Taylor Swift, The Weeknd, and countless other superstars have no problems making $1.

But what about newer, upcoming artists that don't have that big-time record deal and support from multi-million dollar endorsement deals?

T-Pain broke down the numbers on Twitter to bring awareness of the issues for new artists. Though they may not be 100% accurate, as there are a number of other factors to break down, such as royalty splits, download locations, and several other factors; the numbers are accurate if the artist owns 100% of the rights to their music:

First, let's break down how much each platform pays out per stream:

Amazon Music: $0.00402 per stream

Apple Music: $0.00783 per stream

Tidal Music: $0.01284 per stream

Napster: $0.019 per stream

Deezer: $0.0064 per stream

Pandora: $0.00133 per stream

YouTube Music: $0.0008 per stream

Spotify: $0.00318 per stream

Yes, we are talking fractions of a penny per stream. We spoke to several local artists about how these numbers affect them, personally.

"I see now that multiple streaming platforms have made it difficult for artists like myself to collect revenue with the standard of streams being so high. In order to make a dollar, just one dollar, off of one of your songs, you'll have to have thousands of streams which makes being independent a harder battle," said local hip-hop artist CEE Brown. 


How many streams does an artist need to earn $1?


Amazon Music: 249 streams = $1

Apple Music: 128 streams = $1

Tidal Music: 78 streams = $1

Napster: 53 streams = $1

Deezer: 156 streams = $1

Pandora: 752 streams = $1

YouTube Music: 1,250 streams = $1

Spotify: 315 streams = $1

I think we can all agree that this system is not set up for independent artists with a growing fanbase. The benefits of this pay-out scale are designed for the established, mega-stars with millions, or even billions of streams.  

"What can I do besides relentlessly promote and invest in myself in order to see any capital? Though I do not agree with the streaming system whatsoever, it has made me more tactical in my plan to garner a strong fanbase. It's all about perspective at this point," Brown added.


Photo by Mike Miller