Jay Z's heralded entry into the music-streaming industry is finally here. Joined on stage by some of the top names in music—including wife Beyoncé, Madonna, Jason Aldean, Nicki Minaj and Daft Punk—the hip-hop entrepreneur and his partners signed a document on Monday in New York City, affirming their dedication to saving the music industry through the platform Tidal.
While Tidal first launched in 2014, Monday night's event marked the official relaunch under Jay Z's ownership.
"One of the things that sets us aside from a tech company that's selling advertisement or selling hardware is that they're writing the story for us," Jay Z explained in a promotional video. "We need to write the story for ourselves."
The Tidal service promises to provide higher quality audio files for subscribers, which Billboard reports will be at four times the bit rate of its competitors. Currently, it has 25 million music tracks and more than 75,000 music videos.
At a time when so many musicians, record companies and music publishers are having problems with what they claim is a low payout from streaming services like on-demand platforms such as Spotify or digital radio companies like Pandora, Tidal is built on the belief that it can save the music industry because it will operate with artists in mind, considering it is owned by artists.
Jay Z purchased Tidal for a reported $56.2 million in January. It then integrated with Norwegian music platform WiMP on March 23.
For those hoping the New York event would provide more answers about Tidal, sorry, not many details were revealed. While no musicians have pulled their content off Spotify, Pandora or similar services in favor of the relaunched platform, Tidal-exclusive content seems possible. And with top musicians, including streaming dissidents like Taylor Swift and Aldean, pledging their support, it may be something to watch.