Artists Can Generate Revenue for Conservation by Adding Feature Credits for Nature Sounds Used in Songs on Spotify

Elena Mozhvila – unsplash; David Bowie – CC 3.0. Roger Woolman

Today is the 54th edition of Earth Day. A coalition of major music streamers and the UN have had a stroke of inspiration that will hopefully channel millions to conservation.

Entitled “Sounds Right,” artists who utilize stock recordings of animals or weather will have the option of putting a ‘feat. Nature’ credit on any of their songs on services like Spotify and Apple Music to channel the royalties to conservation, restoration, and pollution control associations.

Whether it’s the blackbirds singing on Paul McCartney’s iconic 1968 track of the same name, the crack of thunder to open Enya’s Storm’s in Africa II, or the crow’s cawing in advance of Florence + the Machine’s Dreaming, nature sounds add pivotal touches to an artist’s vision.

Even pop stars like Missy Elliot have used birds and weather for their pieces.

The initiative is being directed by Brian Eno, the legendary Roxy Music producer who produced albums for David Bowie, Peter Gabriel, Coldplay, and the Talking Heads, on behalf of the Museum of the United Nations.

“You have to make a decision about whether you are going to make them sound more like instruments, or whether you’re going to pull the music towards those things. And I think the second option is, actually, kind of more interesting,” Eno told the BBC on the occasion of both Sounds Right and the release of a David Bowie remix that includes animal sounds like pigs and hyenas.

“Hopefully it’ll be a river, or a torrent, or a flood of royalties—and then what we do is distribute that among groups of people who are working on projects to help us deal with the future.”

a screengrab of the Nature playlist – credit, Spotify.

The first group of artists who have given featuring credits to Nature include Bowie, London Grammar, MØ, Tom Walker, Ellie Goulding, and Aurora. Check out the playlists here on Spotify.

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The fund is anticipated to draw in $40 million in revenue from 600 million streams. At the moment, exactly how the money will be spent is unclear, however a group of conservation and ecosystem consultants have identified several at-risk and irreplaceable ecosystems that will benefit from ‘feat. Nature’ credits.

These include Madagascar and the Indian Ocean Islands, Indo-Burma, Borneo, Sumatra, the Philippines, the tropical elevations of the Andes Mountains; and the Atlantic Forest biome in Brazil.

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