In The Wake Of Streaming Success, Tidal Faces $5 million Lawsuit & Terminations

Although Kanye’s TLOP album being exclusively available on Tidal caused subscribers to double from 1 million to 2.5 million, Tidal is now in the midst of financial and management turmoil.

John Emanuele, drummer of American Dollar band claims Tidal failed to obtain licenses for over 100 songs, including hits like “Anything You Synthesize” and “Signaling Through the Flames.” And as a result, Emanuele is seeking to sue for $5 million in back payments, lawyer fees, royalties and damages.

Side Bar: The American Dollar is an American post rock/ambient band that was formed in Queens, New York.

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The American Dollar (left, drummer John Emanuele, & right, guitarist/keyboardist Richard Cupolo)

“Ambient music is a genre of music that puts an emphasis on tone and atmosphere over traditional musical structure or rhythm.“ Their entire catalogue streamed fewer than 13,000 times on Tidal.

The lawsuit also focuses on possible “systematic underpayment of royalties,” for many artists, but of course not the big named celebrities/co-owners, ie: Beyonce, Nicki Minaj, Usher, and Calvin Harris. Tidal has since removed American Dollar’s music and reveals in a statement that the license issues is not with Tidal, but rather Fox Agency or Tunecore; third party companies that assist in obtaining royalties and licenses for streaming sites.

Tidal has terminated CFO Chris Hart and COO Nils Juell. Jeff Toig is now presuming the sole role of CEO at Tidal. Toig was officially brought on board in January. Toig is the former Muve Music (Cricket Wireless’s innovative music service) and SoundCloud Executive and was on the founding team of Virgin Mobile. Toig is now the third CEO since the company launched last year. Hopefully he remains in the position and assists in captivating market share for Tidal & continue to secure that competitive edge.

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Jeff Toig, CEO of Tidal (photo taken from his Facebook)


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