Pandora: Pink Floyd Wrong About Royalty Cut

Company responds to band's claims they are 'tricking artists'

Pink Floyd in London.
MJ Kim/Getty Images
June 26, 2013 2:40 PM ET

Pandora has responded to Pink Floyd's claims that the company is "tricking artists" into supporting a massive royalty cut, saying the rockers have been given "badly misleading information." In a statement published by Business Insider, the music streaming and discovery service pointed to "a well-orchestrated campaign by the RIAA and their lobbying arm to mislead and agitate artists" as the culprit.

500 Greatest Albums of All Time: Pink Floyd, 'The Dark Side of the Moon'

The three surviving members of Pink Floyd accused Pandora of seeking to cut musicians' pay for digital radio play by 85 percent, though a similar plan failed last year – partially because of a letter signed by more than 125 artists including Pink Floyd, Billy Joel and Rihanna. While Pink Floyd accused Pandora of "tricking artists into signing a confusing petition without explaining what they are really being asked to support," the streaming service says the 85 percent figure is incorrect, and notes that Pandora pays songwriters and performers more than comparable services.

The source of Pink Floyd's 85-percent figure is also unclear; though the band linked to an article in The Register, Business Insider points out that the piece doesn't cite a source for the number.

Pink Floyd have had an uneasy relationship with the music's new digital landscape: though they recently agreed with Spotify on a streaming deal for their catalog, they held out for years, and their label, EMI, signed a deal with the streaming service in 2011 without the rights to Floyd's music. The rockers also sued EMI in 2010 for allowing single-song downloads, instead of full-album purchases, on iTunes.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

More Song Stories entries »