Digital subscription services are the major new way we consume music. From Spotify, Pandora, TIDAL and Apple’s new Apple Music, the tech race is on to see who can race ahead of the pack and dominate this field, essentially owning the music industry.
But just because those are the most-marketed, doesn’t mean they’re the only subscription services around. There are a handful of eclectic offerings making their mark on niche original and curated content. On both digital and vinyl records (which is a booming portion of the music industry, albeit still relatively small), rather than trying to offer customers all the music in the world, these start ups are offering selected tunes based around their brand identity.
As these new companies work to stake their claim, here are three music subscription services you probably don’t know about and are missing out on.
Vinyl Me, Please
Vinyl Me, Please is leading the realm of vinyl record subscription services right now. The concept is straight forward but their execution is impeccable. With plans starting at $23 a month, members receive a beautiful package at their door monthly containing a featured record pressed exclusively for its clients. But that’s not all, it also includes a custom cocktail pairing recipe, an original 12″ by 12″ art print inspired by the album, and any add ons ordered from the Vinyl Me, Please store.
The service prides itself on the diversity of its selections, and over the course of the year they’ll feature a mix of new artists, essential releases from known artists, and must-have reissues from decades past. The whole thing is sold on an invite-old basis, but they’re not stingy or exclusive. Request yours here.
Drip is a network of record labels and musicians delivering steady streams of music directly to their biggest fans. In it, fans subscribe to a particular Drip (from Sub Pop, Stones Throw or OWSLA, for instance), receiving access to high-quality, downloadable DRM-free MP3s or streaming of albums, EPs and singles, as well as special exclusives, for a typical subscription of $10 a month. Each Drip is curated by the label or artist with the intent of establishing a sense of community and an intimate connection with its fans.
With 45 different Drips to discover, explore Drip.fm here.
Vinyl Moon: The Mixtape Record Club
Vinyl Moon is a newly Kickstarter-funded record club delivering hand-curated vinyl compilations with new songs by emerging artists from around the world, many of whom are making their vinyl-record debuts. For $25 every month, these limited edition color vinyl runs are packaged in premium record jackets with original artwork designed by visual artists.
With the first two volumes already sold out, Vinyl Moon is primed for success early on, growing its vinyl pressings and audience. Check out the Vinyl Moon Kickstarter here.
Photo Credit: JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images