Update: After this story was published, the SoundCloud post referred to in the original text that follows was pulled. So here’s a shoddy live version from YouTube:
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Original story follows…
Here’s a great example of why Beats 1 has so much potential and so many problems:
— Beats 1 (@Beats1) July 9, 2015
Beats 1 is good since I’ve already found the song New Americana by Halsey.
— jonpmc (@jonpmc) July 9, 2015
Halsey’s ‘New Americana,’ with its Biggie and Nirvana references, and a straight up lyrical nod to the former’s classic joint ‘Juicy,’ is getting a lot of love on the station.
But, while that’s great for the up and comer in theory, there’s an issue: Her most recent single, ‘Hold Me Down,’ was released on June 2.
Right now, ‘New Americana’ is an album track and her debut, ‘Badlands,’ won’t be released until the end of August.
Everyone listen to beats 1 to hear halseys New New Americana and to hear the DJ call me out as one of Halsey's biggest fans!
— //Allie// (@opalhxrry) July 9, 2015
So when listeners vibe on the track when it’s played on Beats 1, they end up on this unofficial SoundCloud page after a quick Google search. See the comments there for evidence.
tune into beats 1 to hear halsey's NEW version of new americana riGHT NOW
— ROWYSO Michigan (@ROWYSO_Michigan) July 8, 2015
It’s just one track, but it highlights a disconnect between Apple’s global broadcasting model and the old approach of fixed release windows. People want to buy the album but they just can’t yet.
Of course, that’s been the case with traditional radio forever, but the difference with Beats 1 is that it’s integrated with a service and devices that could prompt interested listeners to pre-order the album or flag it for future streaming.
Right now, Beats 1 is a smart idea with so many dumb little issues.
Note: Halsey’s label, Astralwerks, informs me – quite curtly – that the track will be on sale on iTunes shortly and that the album is also on pre-sale in the US now.
But, of course, that wasn’t and isn’t my point. I’m in Dublin, Ireland and neither the song nor the record are accessible to me. The issue is not with one individual track, but with promoting music on a global station while sticking to regional/limited release schedules.
I wanted Beats 1 to do better when it came to promoting a great song, but now I probably won’t even buy it myself.