Adele might keep ’25’ off Spotify

13 Nov 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Adele Cries to Her Music, Too.

LONDON — “I’m not going to cry,” Adele said. The British singer, 27, guest-edited the first edition of the re-launched Observer Music magazine, which will hit stands with the U.K. newspaper The Guardian on Sunday.The British songstress is reportedly asking for the same thing Swift did when releasing her best-selling record 1989 last year — that the album only be available to Spotify’s paid premium subscribers rather than all users, including those who stream for free.The chart-topping singer releases her third album 25 later this month, but reports suggest that her team are pushing the streaming service to limit access to paying subscribers only (around 20 million of 75 million users, the rest of whom have to listen to ads).

The Verge, citing an unnamed source “with knowledge of the situation,” on Tuesday reported that 25 may be the next high-profile album that will not stream on Spotify. She was practicing with her band at Music Bank rehearsal studios, an unglamorous warehouse space in South London, and had just finished “When We Were Young,” one of the torchiest ballads on her new album, “25.” It’s a song about running into an old flame that confesses, “I still care” and then, tentatively, asks, “Do you still care?” Adele can get caught up in her own songs, and she wouldn’t want to change that. “In order for me to feel confident with one of my songs it has to really move me,” she said. “That’s how I know that I’ve written a good song for myself — it’s when I start crying. And in her interview with the magazine, she revealed how she coped with the fame that came with her super-successful sophomore album 21, a period in her life that she says felt “almost like an out-of-body experience.” She added: “It’s very easy to give in to being famous. Spotify, though, claimed to The Verge that Adele had made no such request. “It is categorically untrue that anyone has asked us to feature Adele’s new album on premium only,” an unnamed senior executive told the website. Adele, whose last name is Adkins, won the Grammy as Best New Artist with her 2008 debut album, “19.” She multiplied her audience with “21,” her 2011 album full of breakup songs — angry, regretful, lonely, righteous — that used modern production touches around vocals filled with old-fashioned soul.

With the advent of music streaming services like Spotify, Adele and Swift are members of a very small group of musical artists who can actually move records. Adele reportedly tried a similar tactic before her super-successful 2011 album 21 was released — pressuring Spotify to limit it to paid subscribers. Beyond the power of Adele’s voice and the craftsmanship of the music, “21” communicated a palpable sincerity and urgency, the feeling that its wounds were still fresh. “She’s got this incredible intuition about what’s right and what’s real and what suits her,” said Paul Epworth, who wrote and produced songs with Adele on both “21” and the new album. “She’s the sharpest, most instinctive artist I’ve ever worked with.

Should Adele opt out of Spotify, she would follow in the footsteps of Beyonce, whose self-titled album broke records as an iTunes exclusive in 2013, and most notably Taylor Swift. Spotify ended up winning that battle, but as The Verge pointed out, “2011 was a different time — Adele didn’t have the leverage she carries now, and Spotify wasn’t closing in on 100 million users.” Swift is currently available on Apple Music, which does not have a free, ad-supported tier. But after a while I just refused to accept a life that was not real.” Instead of becoming a professional celebrity, Adele says, she retreated into family life, turning down scores of offers for product endorsements and lucrative private appearances.

These days, though, she’s been busy reintroducing herself to the world with her record-breaking new single “Hello,” the first track off her upcoming album 25. And while she’s got some high-profile appearances booked – she’ll perform her first U.S. concert in four years at Radio City Music Hall in New York on Nov. 17 and then will hit up Saturday Night Live the day after her album drops – she doesn’t have a typical rockstar routine. Despite endless offers of product endorsement deals and public appearances, Adele admits that biggest change to her life has been in her grocery shopping, as she now chooses to purchase her food stuffs and essentials at British middle-class Mecca, Waitrose.

In its first week on release, it sold 1.1 million downloads, nearly doubling the seven-day record of 600,000, held by Flo Rida since 2009 for his song Right Round. And she sang in full-throated glory, capturing the vengeful bite of past hits like “Rolling in the Deep” and the hushed suspense and pealing chorus of her new one, “Hello.” Her stage arrangements echo her albums; she wants the songs familiar enough for fans to sing along. Adele had largely maintained public silence while recording “25.” Her reticent re-emergence was a brief, anonymous television advertisement, first shown on Oct. 18 during “The X Factor” in Britain. She panicked. “I was like, ‘Oh, no, I’ve missed my window,’” Adele said over a cup of tea a few days after the ad. “‘Oh, no, it’s too late. No one cares.’” But then, she recalled, her boyfriend, Simon Konecki, joined her at the computer and showed her that thousands of other tweets were pouring in.

Like other songs on the album, “Hello” is filled with thoughts of distance and the irrevocable passage of time, of apologies and coming to terms with the past. Musically, “Hello” has verses with just voice and piano followed by huge, ringing choruses; similarly, the album as a whole switches between organic, unplugged ballads and booming modern pop. As she wrote the album, Adele was no longer the heartbroken avenger she had been on “21”; she had become an internationally recognized star and, at 23, a mother. Tattooed along her right pinky is “Angelo”; on her left pinky is “Paradise” because, she explained, “He’s my paradise.” Adele took time to raise her infant as she pondered what to do next. “I was scared,” she admitted. “It got so out of control, the last album.

I was a bit frightened for a while to step back into it.” Health problems, including a vocal hemorrhage that threatened to permanently damage her voice, had forced her to cancel extensive touring in 2011 and undergo throat surgery; regardless, “21” was a bulwark of the recorded music business throughout 2012. With “25,” she said, “I won’t do less touring than I did before, but what I did before wasn’t that much.” Adele made her first efforts to write new songs in 2013. Maybe I should bow out on a high.’” Of course, she changed her mind. “As time went on, I realized I had no choice,” she continued. “I have to write more music for myself, and there’s nothing else I want to do.” In an interview before rehearsal, Adele was nestled in a black leather armchair at Soho House Dean Street, an antique-filled Georgian townhouse, in a sitting room reserved by her manager to assure privacy. As Adele’s concert audiences have learned, she’s a voluble, unguarded talker, more willing to confess insecurity or ponder her duty to her fans than to promote herself. She was wearing a voluminous dark-blue sweater, black Converse high tops and a pair of baggy black pants that, she admitted, were actually pajama bottoms.

I joshed that she might start a trend in Britain. “It already is a bit of one,” she said, and laughed. “But for skinny people.” Adele would not revisit the making of “21” even if she could. “I just used to let myself drown,” she said. “If I was sad, if I was confused — which I would say were the running themes for most of my records so far — I’d just go with it. She was reluctant to write about her son. “He’s the love of my life and the light of my life, but he’s no one else’s apart from me and his dad.

Tedder had the word “remedy,” some waltzing piano motifs and the idea that the song might be about someone beloved; he looked to Adele for the rest. “She immediately said, ‘This is about my kid,’” Mr. Epworth, and with new collaborators from pop’s top echelons: Sia; Bruno Mars; and the producers Greg Kurstin (Pink, Sia, Kelly Clarkson), Max Martin (Taylor Swift, the Weeknd) and Danger Mouse (Gnarls Barkley, the Black Keys). She was resolved not to repeat “21”; she also, for the first time, discarded as many songs as she kept. “The girl has probably thrown away easily 20 hits off of ‘25’ that will at some point wander away, maybe into other artists’ hands,” Mr.

Can I get with the best producers?’ It’s about, ‘What’s the story?’” The story, in many songs on “25,” is about what to hold on to from the past and what to let go. The songs plunge into their own fears and uncertainty. “Million Years Ago,” a delicate guitar ballad with a hint of Edith Piaf, mourns lost youth and confesses, “I feel like my life is flashing by/And all I can do is watch and cry.” At rehearsal, Adele sang “Million Years Ago” in two versions, one beginning a cappella with her voice completely alone and exposed.

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