Swedish music streaming company Spotify, which has steadily grabbed a decent pie of the Indian music streaming market, is now looking to consolidate further. The streaming platform announced today, that it has bagged a deal with one of the world’s oldest musical labels, Saregama. The deal will provide Spotify with an access to over 100,000 old-school as well as new tracks in more than 25 different languages.
Saregama is a reservoir of Indian classics including music by the likes of legends such as R.D. Burman, Mohammed Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar, Manna Dey and more. The platform has an uncountable list of genres ranging from popular movie soundtracks to devotional music.
Interestingly, Saregama itself serves users with its own piece of hardware, termed ‘Carvaan’. It is an old transistor radio-shaped music box with a collection of thousands of classic old Indian hits, including re-runs of some of the most loved old-time radio shows. It will be interesting to see how Saregama markets the Carvaan going forward, considering the fact that a Spotify subscription would cost considerably less than the Carvaan music box.
Nevertheless, this crucial addition to its India catalog allows Spotify to compete better with other homegrown streaming platforms in India such as Gaana, Wynk and global competitors such as Youtube Music etc., all of whom feature a rich catalog of original Indian music. The deal would also help Spotify enter the 45+ age group in India, which mostly comprises of an audience that craves for old school classics. Spotify had schemed a free, ad-supported service in the country which allows free access to all catalogs.
Last month, Daniel Ek, the company’s chief executive mentioned that “greatly” improving their music catalog in India has had a positive impact. “With the full Saregama Catalogue available on Spotify India, our users will not only find their favourite retro music across local languages, but also be able to discover more old-school songs through Spotify’s locally curated playlists..” said Paul Smith, Director of Global Licensing, Spotify.
“This Is Kishore Kumar”, “Disco Deewane”, starring the late Rishi Kapoor among many others are the editorial spotify playlists featuring the specific artists. Spotify’s algorithm also customises and formulates playlists for its users based on the music they listen.
Saregama’s Managing Director, Vikram Mehra, expressed his delight on partnering with the streaming device, adding how he is sure “listeners would be really happy with this addition.”
In April of 2019, RP Sanjiv Goenka Group of companies had filed a copyright infringement case following which Spotify had to take down all songs owned by Saregama. The company already had rights to push Saregama catalog songs outside of India, but that did not qualify it of hosting the same content within India.