Embattled hip hop mogul Jay Z has resorted to personally calling select subscribers who download the Tidal app and leave their phone numbers.
Jay Z is taking this unusual route to boost the number of new subscribers to the service. So far the app, which costs $20 a month, has been a resounding failure.
It’s tough being a narcissistic business man who thinks his name alone will move product. It’s not the same as slinging crack in the Marcy Projects.
According to Business Insider, the 25 employees were “forced to leave” Tidal.
Tidal has earned such little money following the relaunch of the app that it’s no surprise Jay Z can’t pay his CEO or employees.
Tidal has confirmed that Chen will be replaced by a former CEO, Peter Tonstad, who will likely accept a significant pay cut. press release described Tonstad as Tidal’s “interim CEO,” leaving the door open just a crack for him to make a hasty exit as well.
Unsurprisingly, musicians themselves have been the most vocal naysayers of the artist-owned system. Mumford & Sons responded with “fart noises” when Tidal was mentioned in a Daily Beast interview, while producer/engineer Steve Albini in Vulture compared the service to a “budget version of [Neil Young’s high-quality music player] Pono.” Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard, meanwhile, expressed his own concerns in a separate Daily Beast interview.
“I think they totally blew it by bringing out a bunch of millionaires and billionaires and propping them up onstage and then having them all complain about not being paid,” he said. “There was a wonderful opportunity squandered to highlight what this service would mean for artists who are struggling and to make a plea to people’s hearts and pocketbooks to pay a little more for this service that was going to pay these artists a more reasonable streaming rate. And they didn’t do it. That’s why this thing is going to fail miserably.”