Thes One Of People Under The Stairs Says Spotify Is Hurting Independent Artists

The veteran producer/emcee revealed to that his recent comparison of iTunes versus Spotify yielded some shocking results.

Co-founder of People Under The Stairs Thes One did a two-part interview this week with The producer/emcee shared his opinion of popular music streaming service Spotify, and criticized the technology for its inability to help a group like P.U.T.S. properly generate revenue.

"[People Under The Stairs] had done a test run [with Spotify], we had re-released Stepfather. We put that up through all the different avenues — we put it up on iTunes, we put it on Spotify, here and there. We obviously didn’t want to release the new record and be flying blind and not know where the money was coming in and how." Thes noted that in comparison, Spotify brought in the least revenue. "I was absolutely shocked to see how little money comes in from Spotify. It was like a .0001% compared to iTunes. So I’ve told a lot of people I know, friends of mine like say Ugly Duckling who’s getting ready to release their record, put it up on iTunes or do whatever you gotta do but absolutely do not put the whole record on Spotify. You’re basically gonna be hemorrhaging money."

The veteran added an overall disappointment with the digital music revolution, "Music should be treated with a certain respect and gravity. It’s not something that you get a link to, you listen to it and then you throw it in your trash can digitally. We definitely are working to try and build up that frenzy."

Thes One is presently at work on his solo album, Wonderful Radio as P.U.T.S. prepares to tour with Mac Miller. The full interview at can be read here.



  • Anonymous

    Kiddies do your homework for crying out loud. Don't know real shit if it slapped the taste out of your wack ass mouth!

  • Anonymous

    it's because you don't have any fans, you idiot! lucky for you hiphopdx did this story for you, becauae i would have never heard of you. guess what though? i'm about to you tube your music and see what's up. now say, "thank you hiphopdx".

  • ignitemindz

    All I know is I'm constantly getting .0003 cents for streams on Spotify. lots of spins, little return.

  • Anonymous

    People talkin about "they made they didnt get paid" should probably know that this dude Thes One has made Millions off of Rap in the last 15 years, they are successful as can be.

  • Anonymous

    this nigga got too much time and drinking too much beer !! Yo Thes, you know what hurts more than Spotify !!! Google , dummy

  • Mix Tapes

  • haha

    People Under the Stairs, was on AMC earlier today, haha it's fucking stupid.

  • malco

    spotify is definitely a gamble for independents mostly to the fact that its relatively new. P.U.T.S should give it time to build up, they're A REALLY GOOD GROUP. Still remember hearing "Outrun" and "Earth Travelers" for the first time.

  • Mack

    well the problem with spotify is the deal they made with all the major labels to get access to their libraries. In return those labels (universal, warner etc) get the majority of all generated revenue and indie labels are left with the breadcrumbs.

  • Salaam

    This should be really fucking obvious, but here we go: Spotify: 10 million people worldwide Itunes: EVERYONE WITH AN APPLE PRODUCT And keep in mind that a majority of that is a European base, who I assume do not give a fuck about these clowns. And just because an artist is independent or underground doesn't mean THEY ARE ANY GOOD.

    • Christopher English

      You're totally missing the point. It's not about the number of Apple products. It's about the payout. Download sites (itunes, Amazon) give you 70% back PER DOWNLOAD (album or single) Streaming sites... Grooveshark, Rhapsody, itunes iCloud, Spotify etc.. only give you a percent of a PENNY per stream.

    • StreetFighter

      The last line should resonate to anyone that claims they like good music. Ive seen too many people claiming that underground hip hop is automatically great. Its bullshit. Yes todays mainstream rap is crap but 15-20 years ago good rap was charting high(Rakim, EPMD etc).

    • Anonymous

      Thes One was featured in the LA Times 5 years ago because he built a MILLION DOLLAR house in LA from scratch using Money he made off PUTS records. PUTS has made more money than most Major Label acts.

    • Kris

      hence why he said "apple product"... this would include PC users with iPhones

    • Anonymous

      PC users use iTunes as well. I did for a long time.

  • SpikeyJamez

    Peace and love to People Under The Stairs and all the independent artists out there. Am always willing to support your music when I get enough money to purchase the album. Hopefully the situation resolve soon enough with the Occupy Wall Street Movement fighting against the big corporate greedy monster stealing everyones' money that the 99% deserves. Shout out to Thes One for the informative issue on these digital thieves stealing the consumers and artists moneys.

  • William W. Pendleton

    these fools dont get it. fine, i'll just listen on youtube. or just to spite you now i'll torrent it

    • Anonymous

      Shut up and go shave off that Pedophile Mustache you cornball

    • Anonymous

      Fuck William Pendleton. I'm sure you think you're so hip and ironic with that mustache but everyone around you just thinks that you are a spineless childish moral blank with an enormous sense of entitlement

    • Anonymous

      Fuck you man. People like you are the problem. If you steal the real shit, all we will have is the fake ass radio shit. Steal that fake shit and buy the real. Support real hip hop and it will never die. If you steal that conrball shit that on the radio, youre only taking away one revenue stream for them. With real shit, youre taking their only revenue stream. Thats fucked up man.

  • Christopher English

    They are not the first to say that.. though they are the first Hip hop label to pull out of Spotify. If you're keeping up with music news... or do a Google search, you'll see that 3 other Indie labels have very publicly pulled their music from Spotify as well.

  • Mark Anthony Harris

    Maybe its the fact that Spotify is generally new. OR is it that Spotify isn't here to generate any real money for artists in the first place.

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