Music Industry revenues have seen a gradual increase for the last three consecutive years, rising 8.1 % in 2017 with total revenues at US$ 17.3 billion globally, according to the Global Music Report 2018 of Ifpi (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry). However this upturn is mostly on the back of the phenomenal growth of music streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora and others, which grew 41.1 % globally.
Digital revenue grew 19.1 % and accounted for 54 % of total global revenues. Revenue from physical media (CDs and Vinyl) sales and digital downloads have both continued to decline, with physical media sales registering lower decline at 5.4 % compared to digital downloads which declined 20.5 %.
In India the music industry beat expectations by registering a 27 % growth in revenues to 725.6 crore in 2017 from 570.7 crore in 2016, again driven by the growth in streaming services which grew 37.26 % and accounted for 91 % of total Indian recorded music industry revenues for the year.
In addition to that positive outcome there are a few more reasons to cheer about besides the growth in digital music. There is tremendous prospect for association of music and branding; and in the area of live music and music festivals. Also the establishment of two new music conferences, All About Music now in its second edition and the recently concluded Music Inc, says a lot about the revival and consolidation taking place within the industry.
Underlying this whole growth story is the revolution created by the ubiquitous mobile phone. The tremendous increase in mobile penetration and sharp drop in data charges has led to a huge increase in consumption of music and videos that is proving to be a boon for the music business. However, piracy continues to be a major concern as most people in the country access music and videos illegally.
As stakeholders, innovators and music makers come together to explore the way forward, we are cautiously positive that this resurgence will grow in strength in the coming years and the over a decade and a half long decline is behind us for good.
Those of you who have been around from the 1960's through the 1990's will remember the vibrant live music scene in almost every starred hotel in India. Those were the days when you walked into a nightclub like 'Rendezvous' at The Taj Mahal hotel and 'Supper Club' at the Oberoi Sheraton in Mumbai to see curtains going up on a band that was the prime focus of these outlets. Every seat in these restaurants allowed an unobstructed view of the band that performed every night on resident contracts. Today all this has disappeared thanks to some ridiculously high entertainment taxes on live music. Today, non off these hotels have complete bands playing save for a few that feature small duos or solo singers. The Lodhi in New Delhi, recently listed among the world's best hotels, decided to step in and rewind to the good old days. They got Goa's premier jazz quartet 'Jazz Junction' to move to Delhi on a resident contract and the decision has paid off in terms of footfalls generated by the band. Jazz Junction featuring singer Daniella Rodrigues, pianist Tony Dias,
bassist Colin D'Cruz and drummer Angelo Colasco began playing at The Lodhi in June 2018. Four months into the contract the band generated a sizeable following, with quite a few high profile guests choosing to celebrate their special occasion at the Elan bar where the band performs. Against all odds the rewind option proved to be a huge success and hopefully other properties around the country takes the cue to trigger a whole new revival of live music.