Apple Music Scores Exclusive Playlist Deal With Ministry of Sound Label

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Apple has established an exclusive playlist deal with the Ministry of Sound label, an Apple representative told Variety this afternoon.

Under the terms of the partnership, Ministry of Sound-created playlists will be available on Apple Music starting on Thursday, October 4.


Owned by Sony, Ministry of Sound currently offers several popular playlists on Spotify, such as "Dance Nation," "Rave Nation," and "R&B Mixtape."

Because of the new deal with Apple Music, these playlists, some of which have hundreds of thousands of followers, will be pulled from Spotify and other non-Apple services over the course of the next few days.

Ministry of Sound, founded in 1993, is one of the largest dance-music recording companies and describes itself as "The Home of Dance Music." Ministry of Sound represents artists that include London Grammar, DJ Fresh, Sigala, Marshmello, Yogi, and more.

As Variety points out, this is not Apple's first exclusive playlist deal, and playlists are yet another area where Apple Music, Spotify, and other services can attempt to one up another.

Spotify is well-known for its selection of algorithmic and mood-based playlists, which many believe to be superior to those provided by Apple, but Apple may be able to draw more subscribers by offering exclusive curated playlist content unavailable anywhere else.

Apple has also worked to provide customers with other exclusives, including early album releases, albums unavailable anywhere else, music videos, documentaries, and more.

Top Rated Comments

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27 months ago
Ministry Of Sound is to Dance/Electronica what Velveeta is to cheese. I appreciate that MoS has been a flashpoint for hitmakers over the last few years and has a tremendous back catalog, not all of it forgettable, but again, I'm entirely not impressed with Apple Music's inability to break free of this major label/hitmaker obsession it has. A streaming service should be about exploring boundaries, not just running straight up the middle. For all the risks Apple is willing to take with its hardware initiatives, it's so frustratingly timid as a content company. Just softball after softball. They are so embarrassingly obsequious to the major labels, for no good reason. Especially with Electronica where the real energy is in DJ culture and in the DIY labels that dominate the genre. By the time you get to what the majors pick up, most of the audience has moved on.

Meanwhile, Spotify signed an exclusive deal with Beatport over a year ago.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
27 months ago
And this is why I won’t ever depend on a streaming service. The winds of business change and you no longer have access, unless you subscribe to a new service.

Until that contract expires and another different streaming service picks up some songs/albums/artists that you like.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
27 months ago

Spotify subscriber and MoS enthusiast. Not happy. Can’t stand this exclusivity BS. Same with games. Can’t these companies innovate anymore to get ahead of the competition? All these deals do is hurt consumers.

Ummmmm.....when they were exclusive with Spotify, did you protest?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
27 months ago
Not terribly enthused by Apple's obsession with "curation", honestly. Apple's curators don't know what I like, and I refuse to acknowledge them as some sort of authorative experts on music. They're people with opinions, like any other people.

I get the feeling that Apple with their curation is just a defensive reflex to hide a deficiency or unwillingness to delve into algorithmic suggestions, or maybe simply a blatant marketing trick. By "curating" playlists they attempt to dictate to people what they should be listening to, drive traffic towards preferred tracks and artists, for commercial purposes. Neither possibilities seem particularly attractive to me, honestly.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
27 months ago

They should add a playlist called "Loved." It should contain all the songs you've loved.

You can create a smart playlist for that. Unfortunately it only shows the songs you‘ve loved that are in your library.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
27 months ago
wow... This is pretty big news to be honest.
The way to win in music now is to control the playlists. Thats how most people know of new music. So major labels have been quietly buying up playlist brands so that they control distribution like they used to do with trucks back in the day.

So to start using the playlist is a way to sell your streaming service is a big deal. Yes, the music is all on both services but curation is really important when there is so much new music produced.

Also, this is going to effect artists who are going to see less plays (therefore less money) as the playlists only cover one streaming service. So will that extra money Apple are paying for exclusivity be shared amongst the artists who's songs will get less play? I doubt it...

I wonder if this sets of a playlist war?
I think also it would only make sense if Ministry offer exclusives that cant be had on Spotify as well. That could be a part of the plan.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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