Listen up: Spotify is about to lose a huge catalogue of Indian music

  • TECH
  • Sunday, 28 Apr 2019

Some 120,000 songs from Indian artists and Hindi film soundtracks are about to disappear from Spotify due to failed negotiations with a major local record label. — dpa

This is your last chance to listen to some 120,000 songs from Indian artists and Hindi film soundtracks on Spotify, as they're all about to disappear from the streaming platform following failed negotiations with a major local record label.

Two months after its launch in India, Spotify has told a court it would remove all works belonging to India's oldest record label Saregama India Ltd from its platform at the start of May, according to a court document.

The global music streaming platform launched in India on Feb 28 and Saregama's huge collection of songs in regional languages was expected to boost its market.

The record label says it catalogue includes more than 120,000 songs, mostly old Hindi film songs including music from the first film made in India – Alaam Ara (1931).

The two companies however failed to finalise a licensing agreement and Saregama approached the Delhi High Court seeking an injunction against the Swedish company from using its music, according to the court document dated April 23.

Saregama's counsel told the court that Spotify had approached the company in February 2018 for a license to stream Saregama's work on its platform.

Saregama provided Spotify copyright of its catalogue a month before its launch, but as negotiations on a licensing agreement fell through Spotify should be asked to take down all Saregama works from its platform, the Indian company's counsels said in court.

Spotify's lawyers said all work from Saregama would be deleted from its platform within 10 days from April 23. They said they did not see the litigation as adversarial.

Spotify says it reached 1 million users within a week of its launch in the Indian market which has strong local players.

The company at its launch said it would be offering Indian users 40 million songs and 3 billion playlists across Indian and international music. Spotify has signed multiple partnerships with Indian music labels as it prepared for its launch, including Bollywood label T-Series. – dpa
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