Spotify’s CEO Basically Begged Taylor Swift To Put Her Music On The Service

Getty Image

Spotify, with its millions of subscribers, is obviously doing a lot of things right, but that said, it’s never a good thing when Taylor Swift, perhaps the biggest artist on the planet, doesn’t have her music on your platform. That changed over the past year, though: Swift’s music became available on Spotify last summer, and a few weeks after its release, Reputation also found its way to Spotify.

It wasn’t an easy road to get to this point, though: Spotify CEO and co-founder Daniel Ek dropped by CBS This Morning today, and he said that he had to do a lot of convincing to get Swift’s music on the service.

“You stepped on some toes – the artists, let’s take Taylor [Swift] for instance, they thought they weren’t fairly compensated,” host Gayle King said. “So, you know, you bruised a lot of people’s feelings. Now you and Taylor are back together. She’s got a song, ‘Love Story,’ that says, ‘Baby, just say yes’ — is that what you did?”

To that, Ek said he “should have done a much better job communicating this” and that he takes “full ownership of that,” adding that he even went to see Swift himself “many, many” times to talk about getting her music on Spotify:

“I went to Nashville many, many times and talked to her team. I spent more time directly explaining the model, why streaming mattered. And the great news is I think she saw how streaming is growing. I think she saw that fans were asking for it. So eventually, when the new album [Reputation] came up, she came to Stockholm and spent some time with our team there figuring out a way [to release her album] that made sense to her.”

Ek also talked about competition from services like Apple Music, which he embraces because it makes streaming better as a whole:

The main reason Ek went on the show, by the way, was to discuss Spotify’s IPO: Today is the day that the company’s shares began trading on the New York Stock Exchange.