Miley Cyrus and the change in music streaming


Photo Courtesy of Miley Cyrus/Twitter

by Abby Gentry | Assistant Arts & Culture Editor 

Last week, Miley Cyrus released her new album titled “Miley Cyrus and her Dead Petz.” “Dead Petz” seems to be Miley’s way of taking control in the form of a confusing and attention grabbing album, simply because she has the means to do so.

Not only is the album perplexing and upsetting both musically and lyrically, it also raises questions concerning the future of the music industry and the direction it is heading towards.

Cyrus’s new album is almost incomparable to her 2013 release, “Bangerz.” Her previous album was considered her coming out as the “new” Miley, and her risqué lyrics, outfits choices, and outspoken attitude shocked many.

Now, “Bangerz” seems juvenile compared to what fans are seeing on “Dead Petz.” It would be one thing if the music was well produced with decent lyrics, but each song feels like sitting through an unprepared group presentation where no one knows what to say. To give readers an idea of some of the subject matter in this album, a few of the song titles are, “Dooo it,” “Fweaky,” “I’m so Drunk,” and “Bang Me Box.”

Sophomore Lauren Ryskamp contributes her thoughts on the album and how she feels about the way Cyrus is choosing to present her new music.

“I think the album itself is a little tasteless and feels thrown together,” Ryskamp said. “With that being said, I think it’s cool that she is choosing to do her own thing regardless of what her record label and other people might think.”

After seeing the success of a surprise album through the likes of Beyonce, one could imagine that Cyrus had high hopes for similar results. Although it is free and accessible to everyone, there seem to be few who are interested in listening to the chaos that is “Miley Cyrus and her Dead Petz.”

Miley also broke into a previously uninhabited area of the music industry: free music. Until about three years ago, most people chose to listen to music by purchasing it from the iTunes Store.

Since the introduction of Spotify and similar programs, it seems people are no longer willing to pay for each song when there are other options available. Rather, they are paying for a month of unlimited music selections, or in the case of Miley’s album, listening to it for free.

Many wonder how websites like these work and how they are allowed to seemingly give away music. The trick is that these sites are not selling users the music, they are simply giving access to the music. Essentially, when users download music onto their accounts, they are borrowing the music as opposed to purchasing and owning it.

This is possible through a variety of deals made with record labels, managers, and artists.

In a recent poll taken by 65 students, 75 percent claimed that the way they choose to stream music is through Spotify. In a not-so-close second place, only fifteen percent of students listen to music through the more traditional way by shopping the iTunes store. The remainder of students choose to listen through sites such as Pandora and SoundCloud with a few attempting to test Spotify’s new competitor, Apple Music.

Sophomore and music minor Alex Worden shares his opinion and preferences on music streaming.

“I personally like to use iTunes,” Worden said.  “I have built up my library over a long period of time and I still like to purchase songs. I have recently started using Apple Music and will try to start streaming more often.”

Although there are still a few music fans who choose to stick to the more traditional way of purchasing music, the use of free streaming websites is rapidly growing. Artists such as Miley Cyrus are helping to expand the free music movement by making their new albums even more available to fans.

With several pros and cons to each option, it is ultimately up to the listeners to choose their personal preference and most suitable way to purchase music.