K-Pop fans can finally listen to their favourite music and artists once again now that Kakao Entertainment (previously Kakao M) and Spotify have settled their disputes.
A week ago, K-Pop fans awoke to some of their favourite K-pop music and artists removed from the music streaming service. Artists under Kakao Entertainment (previously Kakao M), such as Mamamoo, Seventeen and Monsta X were some of the many artists that had their music removed from Spotify. The removal was due to failed negotiations between the entertainment company and the streaming service.
Both fans and artists were shocked and disappointed by Kakao Entertainment’s failure. During the brief period, artists HyunA and Jessi moved to Psy’s label P NATION and group Epik High moved to OURS Co. so that they can re-upload their songs to Spotify.
With the dispute settled, fans worldwide can listen to their songs on Spotify again. The new agreement between Spotify and Kakao Entertainment also made the same content available in South Korea for the first time.
Spotify launched in the country last month but Kakao’s own streaming service, MelOn – arguably one of the most popular streaming service in South Korea – meant that local fans didn’t find the need to use Spotify. With this new agreement, Spotify hopes to reach more Korean listeners.
“We are pleased that Kakao Entertainment’s content and artists are back on Spotify, allowing our 345M+ global listeners across 170 countries to once again enjoy the music they love,” said a spokesperson for Spotify. “Spotify’s mission has always been to connect artists to their fans all over the world and to give listeners access to all of the world’s music. We are delighted that our Korean listeners will now also be able to enjoy this local music alongside our 70 million+ songs and 4 billion+ playlists. We remain committed to making a positive impact on Korea’s music streaming ecosystem through our partnerships with artists, labels, and local rights holders.”
Once throwing shots at each other, the two corporations are now singing the same tune.
“Kakao Entertainment Corp.(previously Kakao M) has entered into an agreement with Spotify and will sequentially provide its music content to Spotify for service in and beyond Korea. Through its diverse partnerships around the world including Spotify, Kakao Entertainment hopes that music lovers around the world can easily access its artists’ and music content to enjoy K-pop. Kakao Entertainment remains committed to the Korean music ecosystem and its growth and will continue protecting the rights of artists, labels and local rights holders going forward,” said a spokesperson for Kakao Entertainment.
As of right now, some song titles and album names have returned to Spotify, though most are unplayable at the moment. Whilst things aren’t completely back to normal yet, K-pop fans are quite happy about the announcement.