Are Mixtape Dead?

Are mixtapes dead? Short answer, yes but things never really die in this day and age of entertainment. See people releasing free bodies of music to build notoriety will always exist but the benefits of doing such is what is really fading away. The music industry has gone away from using the free mixtape platform to streaming music because there are royalties to be had. It is better to get a little something back when you are still going to get the high numbers with promotion. Yet history tells us that most people will not accept the new wave of music therefore people will not let go of a once proven venue to build notoriety. So even as things are no longer popping like they were, mixtapes will remain but not even close to as popular as they once were.

The mixtape market has launching some huge acts over the years. Wiz Khalifa most notibly with Kush and Orange Juice, Wale with The Mixtape About Nothing, Drake’s So Far Gone, Young Trap or Die, and many more. These are the reasons why mixtapes will never die, people will always remember how these tapes open the doors for success and they will want to repeat it. Much like people today are still trying to sell mixtapes on the streets even as the game has gone digital a very long time ago. People always seek out formulas on how others have done things instead of creating their own. Understand no one likes to let go of things that aren’t working like they once did hoping for the one day that it rebounds even as that day never comes.

I remember the moment when I realized the mixtape market was in trouble. It was one of those dates like 12/12/12 when I was gearing up for a long night of mixtapes. Back then Datpiff would average in the thirties of sponsored mixtapes and there would be multiple known acts releasing projects on these days. What sticks out here is this was the first time that a special date fell flat when it came to mixtapes. This long since have detriorated for the likes of Datpiff who has recently begun to repost old tapes to cover up the fact they aren’t getting the exclusives anymore. These days they may get around five sponsored tapes a day and I focus on both sponsored and unsponsored tapes to come up with a quota of 15 tapes a day. There are days where I forget to check Datpiff for anything to review a day. Instead Soundcloud is where it is at for singles and Spotify will have full albums to stream. This is why you see an increase of ads on mixtape sites and if these don’t cover cost then big named storage sites like this will fade away.

The moral to this story is to know where the game is going. Mixtapes long since has been fading but people won’t let it go. Right now the game is about streaming exclusives because there is money to be had there in ad revenue, royalties, subscriptions, sponsorships, and more. The subscription model of Apple Itunes is one that is solid enough to survive while things like Datpiff, Soundcloud, and even Spotify are having their issues. Look at it like this the Power Rangers television show was once to the forefront of entertainment for a whole generation. I loved it when I was a kid but these days not so much for children in the demographic. That isn’t to say they aren’t still making episodes, they never went anywhere after all this time. They figured a way to survive with what they have but they aren’t ever going to be as big as they were. Doesn’t matter that they decided to reboot it with a movie, its not going to help.