Songwriter would need 288million streams to earn average Spotify staff salary

Person using Spotify on their phone

A songwriter would need 288million streams of their work to earn the average salary of a Spotify employee, according to new figures.

According to The Trichordist, if a songwriter retains all publishing rights to their song they would need 288,104,634.15 spins to earn the reported average salary of a Spotify employee – $168,747.

The figure is based on songwriters being paid on average $0.00058 per stream of their song on Spotify, a rate The Trichordist describes as “abysmally below market.”

The Trichordist post reads: “Spotify just posted their financials and Paul Resnikoff at Digital Music News was quick to point out that the average Spotify employee salary is $168,747.

“Contrast that to the plight of songwriters. There would be no music business without the fundamental efforts of songwriters. Yet, there is not a free market in songs.”

The Trichordist describes itself as a group of artists working towards an ethical and sustainable internet.

Streaming services have come under fire for how little they compensate musicians. Van Halen manager Irving Azoff recently challenged YouTube to come up with a fairer deal for artists, while Metallica manager Peter Mensch described YouTube as “the devil.”

Sixx AM called on YouTube to live up to its former motto, “Don’t Be Evil.” Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke compared YouTube to Nazis, saying they “steal” art.

Streaming and vinyl behind rise in music profits

Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.