Blog

Modern Songs of Dissent: 10 Black Lives Matter Anthems

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jul 31, 2020 2:09:43 PM

The past two months have seen a significant renewed interest in protest songs. Music streaming of these songs has increased, and countless musicians have recorded new ones in support of Black Lives Matter. As this movement continues to demand racial justice, we’ve been reflecting on protest songs from the last century, from the timeless “This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie (1944) continuing through such Civil Rights anthems as “The Times They Are a-Changin’” by Bob Dylan (1964), “A Change is Gonna Come” by Sam Cooke (1964), and “Respect” by Aretha Franklin (1967).

America has a rich history of dissenting through music, which can be traced from these early songs to late-20th century classics like “Fight the Power” by Public Enemy (1989) and “Killing in the Name” by Rage Against the Machine (1992), to those of today. We’ve picked 10 Black Lives Matter songs that speak truth to power in profound ways.

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Topics: year in review

20 Best Songs of 2020 (So Far)

Posted by Dario Slavazza & Eric Stensvaag on Jul 20, 2020 12:10:51 PM

The first half of 2020 was so crazy it was sometimes hard to make time for new music...Even for music curators like ourselves! Tour cancelations and venue closures have had a major impact on music fans and the artists who depend on live performances for income. But it hasn’t been all bad news. Whether your exposure to new music has been limited to the latest hits or you’ve managed to dig a bit deeper, the 2020s have already delivered lots of great songs.

We’ve picked 20 Best Songs of 2020 (So Far), comprised of 10 Favorite Hits and 10 Deep Cuts. Curious why these specific tracks stood out from the hundreds of others we’ve listened to? We’ve included a few notes about each song and the artists who made them.

Check out the full 20-track YouTube playlist here.

10 Favorite Hits

"At the Door" by The Strokes — The Strokes are back! Casablancas' emotive baritone swims through this sparse and moody track that hits all the right spots. The Strokes are older and that jaded New York vibe finally has some bite behind it.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, year in review

Music Licensing Simplified

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf on Jul 13, 2020 7:10:24 PM

We hear from businesses every day that music copyright is insanely confusing. We know that clear, succinct resources are few and far between. To that end, we’ve been compiling common questions and answers to help make sense of it all. 

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Topics: Music Licensing

Top 5 Music Trends of 2020

Posted by George Kingsland on Jul 8, 2020 1:20:01 PM

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen huge changes in the way the average person consumes music. As we have sheltered in place, creative adaptation has been key for musicians and listeners alike. In this article, we’ll explore the Top 5 Music Trends of 2020 so far. Even with live music essentially cancelled, music has continued to play a central role in our socially distanced society while becoming a vital part of the fight for racial justice.

Virtual Concerts

With live performances on hold and concert venues closed, many artists have proven adept at new ways of sharing their music. With record numbers of YouTube videos posted from home studios and bedrooms, and suddenly-commonplace livestreamed performances on Twitch and Instagram Live, artists are reaching their fans in a variety of novel ways.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music Business, Music streaming, year in review, Music for wellness

Was Daft Punk Right? Is Music Being Overtaken by Robots?

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf & Eric Stensvaag on Jul 1, 2020 11:56:10 AM

Super Abbreviated History of Music Listening

In the 1980s, mixtapes were recorded, painstakingly, one song at a time. Then we had Now That’s What I Call Music! compilations in the 90s, Napster mp3’s burned onto CD’s at the turn of the century, and iPod shuffles in the mid-aughts. The unifying thread amongst all these methods of playlist construction is that they were human created. It wasn’t until Pandora, Spotify and iTunes Radio hit the mainstream that AI-driven music curation played a significant role in the discovery process for music fans.

Now however, AI curation has become the norm, with BBC reporting that “an algorithm...will decide what you hear–and critically, what you’ll hear next.” People still create customized playlists for special events, and DJs–though they have been forced online recently–still play an important role in music listening and discovery. But in general, how often are we or another human choosing the next song, as opposed to an algorithm?

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Topics: Music Business, Music streaming, streaming services, Music as a Service

How 3 Months of Lockdown Changed Our Approach to Working Out

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf on Jun 16, 2020 4:32:14 PM

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen a number of changes in peoples’ fitness regimens, including some unexpected ones. In order to get first hand accounts of how people are pivoting, we conducted our own survey on a group of 400 men and women in the US, ages 18-54, that have exercised at home or outside in the last 30 days. Despite the media telling you otherwise, it seems as though, from the results of our survey, people have actually improved their fitness throughout this stressful time.

“Quarantine 15”

We’ve heard a lot about people building unhealthy habits during quarantine, but this may not be the case.

-70% of survey respondents said that they are working out more now than ever before.

People are actually using this time to form healthier habits and participate in forms of outdoor exercise. People across all walks of life are walking more, particularly since it was the only safe outlet for outdoor time for many weeks. At Feed.fm, we saw massive usage spikes for all of our at-home fitness app customers throughout April and May. Not only were people working out more frequently, but also working out for longer periods of time.

Gym Versus Home

Obviously, people haven’t had access to gyms and fitness classes as they used to, thus have had to get creative. But people still seem to be enjoying their workouts at home–– maybe even more than they expected. There is the convenience factor to consider, and the time savings realized by walking to the other room vs. driving across town. But, one thing many didn’t consider at the outset - it’s likely you have other people in the room while you’re getting your heart rate up. 43% of exercisers said they are typically in the living room, which is the highest traffic room in the house for many.

-71% of people say that, whether they like it or not, there are others present in the room while they work out.

-18% of those people find it embarrassing to work out in the presence of others.

Contrast this experience with gym workouts, which usually includes others exercising anonymously in the same room. Almost 1/5th of respondents would like that anonymity, but that’s just not happening with kids, spouses or roommates on top of each other in the house!

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Songs for Change Mixtape (1989-Present)

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jun 4, 2020 6:40:04 PM

We at Feed.fm stand with Black communities across the country, and with all those who are demanding change in the U.S. and abroad right now.

As we contemplate art’s role in affecting change, we’ve compiled a 3-hour Songs for Change Mixtape from the past 30 years. While most of these songs focus on racial equality, we’ve also included others calling for peace, gun control, women’s rights, and LGBTQ rights.

We know that music plays an essential role in motivating and bringing different people together. It’s also a powerful yet peaceful outlet for emotional expression, including the raw anger and grief that have been stirred up by the pandemic and protests.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog

Don't Sleep on Wearables...a Primer for Digital Fitness

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf on May 14, 2020 1:17:42 PM

As discussed in our recent whitepaper, Content, Community and Technology: Digital ecosystems for fitness brands, we've found that there are five essential pillars of a unified digital fitness experience. This article follows the first in a series -- Time to Focus on Your App -- to spotlight the second pillar of digital fitness: Your wearables.

Wearables are here to stay

Even before COVID-19, fitness and digital had been on a path of convergence. As remote fitness takes root more deeply, wearables are quickly transforming from basic data capture tools to sophisticated feedback devices that responsively support a broad population...encompassing people with medical conditions to professional athletes and everyone in between.

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Topics: Customer Engagment, Fitness

Bored with Billboard? Time for Classical: 30 Pieces Every Music Lover Should Hear

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on May 5, 2020 5:38:27 PM

Music industry leader Chartmetric recently published a data-driven analysis of COVID-19’s effects on listening habits. Their primary finding? Classical and ambient are “the big quarantine winners.”

As we all struggle to find healthy outlets for combatting stay-at-home stress, classical music is a winningly creative option. The physiological benefits of music listening are well documented, and in the words of respected neuroscientist Dr. Daniel Levitin, “[music] doesn't have the unwanted side effects that many pharmaceutical products do.” Pandemic considerations aside, we’ve chosen 30 classical pieces every music lover should hear...both classical fans and those needing an introduction.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music for wellness

Fitness Will Never be the Same - Time to Focus on Your App

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf on Apr 14, 2020 6:16:58 PM

The last decade saw major transformations to the fitness industry, with an explosion of new digital fitness companies spurring the old guard to adopt digital engagement strategies. Yet even the most farsighted would likely concede that the future has arrived much quicker than expected. COVID-19 is already seen as a tipping point in the merging of fitness and digital. As discussed in our recent whitepaper, Content, Community and Technology: Digital ecosystems for fitness brands, fitness customers increasingly expect that all brands provide convenient, high-tech options for exercising remotely.

There has never been a more pressing need to get your content online. Our recommendations seek to balance this expediency against the considerations that can deliver long-term ROI to your business. At Feed.fm, we've found that there are five essential pillars of a unified digital fitness experience.

  1. Custom-built mobile apps
  2. Integration with wearable health-tracking devices
  3. Professional-quality video content and hosting
  4. Training content
  5. Music integration

This article focuses on the first pillar of digital fitness: Your mobile app.

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Topics: Apps, Customer Engagment, Fitness